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Construction Companies 09 May 2004 17:02 #28589

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Does anyone on this board have recommendations for cinema construction companies? The list I have now has Largo Construction, Ranack Constructors, VCC, and Wyatt. I know it was important to have the design created by theater architects, is it also as important to have the construction companies specialize in theaters? Thanks
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Re: Construction Companies 10 May 2004 05:54 #28590

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You are right that it is vital to get an architect experienced in theatres/cinemas to get the job done right, and preferably one familiar with your local ordinances and enforcement, but it may not be so vital with regards to the contractor. Today's cinemas are fairly straight forward enterprises which most any contractor worthy of the licnese can follow the plans/specifications for. It may help to get one experienced in this area of construction, but more important is their general reputation as to integrity, timeliness and reasonable cost. While many owners simply contract with the architect to hire the general contractor, often it is best for the owner or his agent to search for the most reputable contractors apart from the architect's recommendations. After all, secret alliances between architects and builders have been know in the past, and such aliances are rarely to the benefit of the owner, since they are designed to be of benefit to the parties ouside of any one contract. If your job is especially large or intricate it may be best to consult a man who has acted as a consultant on such jobs so as to avoid the natural conflict of interests that result when an architect/contractor can profit from his own recommendations.

Should you need recommendations as to architects, contractors and consultants, you might contact the League of Historic American Theatres ( www.LHAT.org ) where they maintain lists of accredited and experienced men. These experts may be looked upon as overkill by someone wanting just a simple, single screen cinema, but even if they specialize in restorations of movie palaces, it is possible that they can bring their expertise and quality to your enterprise, or recommend soemone who can. Best Wishes, Jim, member www.HistoricTheatrs.org

[This message has been edited by jimor (edited May 10, 2004).]
Jim R. (new E-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) member: www.HistoricTheatres.org
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Re: Construction Companies 11 May 2004 19:52 #28591

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When it's time to get an estimate from the construction company and you give them the schematic, is it typical to have to pay for the estimate?
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Re: Construction Companies 12 May 2004 07:03 #28592

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Yes, if you are really asking for a bid; No, if you only want a ballpark, non-binding estimate. You see, it takes time for a reputable firm to examine sufficiently detailed drawings and specs to determine what they are expected to do, and therefore what their costs will be. Good firms have specialists for just this type of work, but 'wally's builders' down the street may assure you that they will cost less, but can they really do the job? It is no favor to you to get a 'free' estimate that isn't worth the paper it's printed on, or a timeline that is pure fiction. 'Caveat Emptor' = 'Let the Buyer Beware' applies here too, by doctrine of law. This is why it is almost always best to investigate things yourself and check out the works, finances and history of any firm that says it will do work for you -- especially if they appear too good (low cost) to be real. Any contractor eager to get out of the residential and strip mall jobs rut will likely price very low to get thier foot in the door, but do you really want them to cut their teeth on your property? Find a well-done cinema nearby and ask the owner who designed/built it and then check into them, if you don't want to investigate through other resources. But do expect to pay for any REAL estimate, the customary scope of which a real estate attorney in your locale can best advise you of. Best Wishes. P.S. The more detailed your plans/drawings/specs (or 'schematic' as you put it), the more accurate their estimate can be, and if your plans are too sketchy, expect a reputable firm to decline to estimate. Jim
Jim R. (new E-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ) member: www.HistoricTheatres.org
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