Los Angeles is one big place. In fact, it is the second-largest metropolitan area in the entire United States, behind only to New York. It is also quite rich, in more ways than one, having a diversified economy and a productive culture that contribute to economic development and cultural enrichment; not only for the city and the state, but also for the entire United States.
As such, the demand for large-scale construction is high. Here, we are listing the top 15 contractors who are proven to get things done and deliver some of the largest projects in the city.
2507 Empire Ave, Burbank, CA 91504
McCormick Construction is a Burbank, CA-based family-owned and operated general contractor and designer-builder servicing California, Arizona, Nevada, Utah, Oregon and Washington. From its humble beginnings in 1914, this fourth-generation firm has grown into a premier builder that specializes in general construction and construction management of mid- to high-rise commercial and institutional buildings, industrial projects, retail and medical facilities, multi- family residential and interiors for both the public and private sectors. McCormick has been the recipient of many awards, including the Design-Build Institute of America National Award of Merit, the Engineering News Record Best Project Awards, and the ENR California Award of Merit.
In Manhattan Beach, McCormick delivered design-build services for a high-security facility for the Hughes Electro-Optical & Data Systems Group Strategic Defense Initiative. The project was composed of two six-story buildings totalling 300,000 square feet. Some of the high-tech features included Department of Defense-controlled access booths, Sensitive Compartmented Information Facility (SCIF) areas with sound masking, eight computer rooms, a telecommunications command center with fully redundant backup systems, electronic component development laboratories, and multiple focal plane laboratories for laser research.
McCarthy Building Companies
20401 SW Birch StNewport Beach, CA 92660
McCarthy Building Companies is an 100% employee-owned general contractor headquartered in St. Louis, Missouri, with offices in 15 cities across the country, including San Francisco. Grown from an Ann Arbor-based lumber business founded in 1864, McCarthy now prides itself on its substantial nationwide portfolio in a wide variety of markets including hospitality, healthcare, education, science, commercial, government, renewable energy, and civil. Over the years, the firm has earned many awards, including the Society for College and University Planning Jury’s Choice Award, the San Francisco Business Times & Silicon Valley Business Journal Healthiest Employer Awards, the AIA Awards, and the ENR California Best Project Award.
In Irvine, McCarthy built the 20-40 Pacifica Office Buildings. The complex is a set of two 15-story, Class-A speculative office buildings totaling 660,000 square feet with surface parking for more than 350 cars. Clad in rich Italian travertine, the towers are located adjacent to the I-405 freeway.and has convenient pedestrian access to the Irvine Spectrum Center. McCarthy made the building sustainable through numerous features, such as floor-to-ceiling, high performance glazing, and efficient water, lighting and energy systems.
555 First St, San Fernando, CA 91340
Principals and brothers Doug, Greg and Jeff Bernards formed Bernards in 1974, a San Fernando-headquartered, employee-owned builder and construction management firm. The company is currently staffed by 260 employees, including 50 LEED Accredited Professionals across the company’s five California offices. Bernards has won many of the industry’s most prestigious awards, such as the AIA LA Design Awards, the Los Angeles Business Council Architectural Awards, the ENR Best Projects Awards, and the DBIA National Design-Build Award of Merit.
Bernards was responsible for the Camden Apartments in Hollywood, a 700,000 square-foot mixed-use development that promises “sophisticated living along the Walk of Fame.” The complex is composed of four five-story towers over a two-story podium, and features 290 contemporary housing units for Hollywood’s young entertainment professionals. A notable fact about the project is its challenging site conditions, in which Bernards met the tight spaces and restrictions from a neighboring landlord with multi-phase construction and careful crane repositioning.
C.W. Driver Companies
468 N Rosemead Blvd, Pasadena, CA 91107
Pasadena-based C.W. Driver Companies is a premier builder serving California since 1919. The historic company proudly celebrates its 100-year anniversary this year. As a leader in general contracting and construction management services, C.W. Driver Companies are on the cutting edge across a broad spectrum of industries, including education, commercial/office, technology, healthcare/biomedical, mixed-use, assisted living, entertainment, retail, industrial and civic. Ranked in Engineering News Record‘s Top 150 General Contractors and Top 100 Construction Managers, C.W. Driver Companies has the ability to build a variety of projects, from large tenant improvements to small renovations and specialized projects through its affiliates Driver SPG and Good & Roberts. C.W. Driver’s extensive resume of achievements and recognitions include the LA Architectural Award of Excellence, the AIACC Award of Honor, the AIA Los Angeles Design Merit Award, DBIA-WPR Awards of Distinction and Excellence, ENR California Best Projects Award and ENR National Best Projects Award.
The new 460,000 GSF senior living facility, located in the Playa Vista area of Los Angeles, is a continuing care retirement community that includes 175 independent living residences, as well as 24 assisted living and memory care apartments. The structure also includes one level of basement parking with 218 spaces. Amenities include a courtyard and patio at the ground level with a café, bar, and outdoor dining area; theater; full-service salon and day spa; library and business center; art and activity studio; fitness center; and a rooftop featuring a swimming pool, garden, café with outdoor dining.
18850 Von Karman Ave, Ste 100, Irvine, CA 92612
Hensel Phelps is a Colorado-headquartered employee-owned general contractor and developer with offices in California, Arizona, Colorado, Florida Hawaii, Texas, Virginia, and Washington. Formed in 1937, the company has a diverse portfolio of projects within the country and abroad. These projects include aviation and transportation, commercial office, educational, government, healthcare, mission-critical, hospitality and leisure, industrial, justice and public safety, lab and research, multi-residence, museum, and library. In recent years, Hensel Phelps has been the recipient of the Associated General Contractors Build America Award and the DBIA Award.
In Anaheim, Hensel Phelps built the 640,000 square-foot Kaiser Permanente Anaheim Medical Center. The hospital is made up of a six-story 430,000 square-foot main building, a three-story 32,000 square-foot Central Utility Plant, and 180,000 square-foot Hospital Support Building. The complex houses a number of medical facilities, including 262 beds, 13 operating rooms, an MRI facility, 10 delivery rooms, 36 ER bays, 24 pediatric beds, 20 neonatal intensive care bassinet rooms, an inpatient pharmacy, a laboratory, central sterile, dining services, and a morgue. The center is built on a 27-acre site on which Hensel Phelps installed 50 specimen oak trees at least 72 box and larger, five water features, and 25 rocks weighing over 8,000 pounds each in addition to the complex.
3330 Ocean Park Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90405-3240
Santa Monica-based Morley Builders is an employee-owned, full-service general contractor that serves southern California. The company specializes in general construction for major civic structures, educational and research facilities, parking structures, commercial, retail, medical and healthcare buildings, and multifamily residential complexes, and is experienced in design-build, seismic strengthening, preservation, modernization and sustainable projects. A spot in ENR’s Top 400 Contractors and an Los Angeles Business Council Architectural Award are just some of the accolades achieved by Morley.
The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Los Angeles called upon Morley to build the 480,000 square-foot Cathedral of Our Lady of The Angels at 555 West Temple Street. The church replaces the former Cathedral of St. Vibiana as the seat of the Archdiocese. The current cathedral has the capacity to seat 3,000 people, and accommodate 5,000 more in its grand public plaza. Notable features include the largest installation of alabaster windows in the world, faceted architectural concrete walls with hundreds of non-repeating angles, integration of commissioned artworks, seismic base isolation and architectural concrete designed for a service life of 500 years. Called by the Wall Street Journal as “the most impressive large interior space ever built in Los Angeles,” the cathedral won ENR’s Top Seismic Project Award.
550 S Hope St, Ste 700, Los Angeles, CA 90071
Suffolk is a Boston-based general contractor with offices in several locations across the country, including Los Angeles. Edward Fish, Sr. established the firm in 1982 as an open-shop contractor, then immediately transferred full leadership and management to his then-23-year-old son John Fish, who still leads the company as Chairman and CEO. The company livestrue to their motto, “build smart”, by encouraging employees and associates to innovate in their work. Suffolk has received numerous recognitions for its work, including the Associated Builders and Contractors National Award for Excellence in Safety, and the NAIOP Public Service Award.
Suffolk recently topped the 560,000 square-foot residential tower at 888 South Hope Street. The 34-story apartment complex features 530 residential units on top of ground-floor retail space, as well as a penthouse clubhouse, a 33,000 square-foot open-air amenity deck, and additional amenity space on the eighth floor.
261 S Figueroa St, Ste 120, Los Angeles CA 90012
Matt Construction is a general contractor established in 1991 by late founder Paul Matt, Executive VP Al Matt, and current CEO Steve Matt, and currently headquartered in Los Angeles. The firm’s portfolio ranges a wide variety of projects, from mixed-use to commercial, institutional and hospitality. Matt earned the AIA Los Angeles Building Team of the Year Awards twice, as well as the AIA Los Angeles Presidential Award.
In Hollywood, Matt renovated, expanded and converted a landmark hotel into the Marriott Renaissance Hotel, located near the Chinese Theatre and the Walk of Fame. The work included the addition of a new 22-story tower to the 560,000 square foot landmark hotel, which also stands 22 stories tall. The resulting structure features 640 rooms, 33 luxury suites, a conference center, and a 270-degree panoramic view of Hollywood.
811 Wilshire Blvd, Ste 1500, Los Angeles, CA 90017
Founded in 1911, Hathaway Dinwiddie is a San Francisco-based construction company with offices in Santa Clara and Los Angeles. The firm is currently composed of more than 300 regular employees, a third of which are LEED Accredited Professionals. The company is particularly experienced in a wide variety of project types that include commercial office, higher education, biopharmaceutical, healthcare, technology, entertainment, finance, and special use facilities. President and CEO Greg Cosko currently leads the company, which has been honored with several awards, including the ENR California Contractor of the Year Award and the DBIA National Award of Merit.
Hathaway Dinwiddie is currently building EPIC, an office tower at 5901 Sunset Boulevard. The 15-story, 750,000 square-foot tower is divided into four major components: a nine-story, 340,000 square-foot office space, 15,000 square-foot ground floor retail, a 5-story 300,000 square-foot above grade parking, and 2-level 100,000 square-foot below grade parking. The towel also includes a rooftop central plant, outdoor terraces, extensive lush landscaping, and associated sitework. EPIC is targeted to achieve LEED Gold Certification.
Charles Pankow Builders
1 Sutter St, Ste 200, San Francisco, CA 94109
In 1963, Charles Pankow established his eponymous firm with its high-quality design-build services. Today, Pankow is a reputable designer-builder with more than 1,000 projects under its belt, based in California and with a wholly-owned subsidiary in Hawaii. As one of the founding organizations behind the Design-Build Institute of America (DBIA), Pankow has dedicated itself to delivering exceptional projects from inception and design to construction and completion. Through the years, Pakow has received numerous recognitions, including the DBIA National Awards, the ENR Best Project Awards, and the American Society of Landscape Architects Award of Excellence.
The Emerson is a 20-story, 270-unit high-rise residential tower with four levels of parking that Pankow built for Related California. The ground floor houses a restaurant, cafe, main lobby, technology center, office space and a fitness center. The primary residence hall follows from the 2nd to the 18th story. The top or 20th story is the Penthouse level, which contains a large rooftop terrace, a party room, a kitchen, dwelling units, and accessory building service rooms.
One California Plaza, 300 S Grand Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90071
AECOM is a Los Angeles-based global infrastructure firm established in 1990, after a handful of employees from design and engineering companies shared a dream of creating an industry leading firm dedicated to making the world a better place. This Fortune 500 firm employs 87,000 professionals across seven continents. AECOM earned revenues of approximately $20.2 billion during fiscal year 2018, as well as a laundry list of awards, including the Institution of Structural Engineers Supreme Award, the Environmental Business Journal Industry Leadership Award, and the American Institute of Architects (AIA) LA Design Award.
The 1.5 million-square-foot LAC + USC Medical Center at 2051 Marengo Street is one of AECOM’s major contributions to Los Angeles. Taking the lion’s share of the project is the 680,000-square-foot, 600-bed in-patient tower, which is joined by the 430,000-square-foot seismic base-isolated diagnostic and treatment building, the 330,000-square-foot outpatient building, and the 50,000-square-foot below-grade central plant.
18201 Von Karman Ave, Ste 800, Irvine, CA 92612
Founded in 1906, Clark Construction has grown from a small local excavator into one of the most capable and trusted contractors in the entire United States today. The firm is proud of having balanced its heritage as a local contractor with its reach throughout the country. With over 4,200 employees spread across its regional offices, the company has the experience and capability to tackle every project of every size imaginable, and successfully deliver them with impeccable service. The firm has won many awards, including the Associated General Contractors Build America Awards, ABC National Excellence in Construction Eagle Awards, ENR Best of the Best Awards, DBIA Awards, and Sustainability Awards.
The California Department of General Services tasked Clark to construct the State’s Department of Transportation’s District 7 Headquarters at 100 South Main Street under the State’s Excellence in Public Building Program. The office tower stands at 13 stories with a floor area of 756,000 square feet. The 1-2 million square-foot complex also include four levels of underground parking for more than 1,100 cars.
865 S Figueroa St, Ste 3000, Los Angeles, CA 90017
In 1888, a young Swedish migrant in Los Angeles started a brick masonry and contracting business that grew into Swinerton, a San Francisco-headquartered general contractor with 3,500 employees and 15 offices across the country, including the origin city of Los Angeles. In addition to the past, the firm also looks towards the future, being member of the USGBC, and establishing the Center for Excellence in Project Delivery in 2012 to pursue their commitment in sustainable construction. Their efforts have been recognized through a laundry list of awards, including the Associated General Contractors of California Safety Excellence Award, ENR CA #1 General Contractor, CEA Award for Excellence in Safety, ENR California Best Project Awards, and AIA Award of Honor for Excellence in Design and Execution.
Swinerton designed and built Crescent Heights’ high-rise apartment complex Ten Thousand at 10000 Santa Monica Boulevard. Built as the most high-tech residential complex in the United States, this 40-story tower features a plethora of electronics-based amenities such as a proprietary concierge app and a staff of robotic butlers named Charley, as well as one-of-a-kind amenities such as on-site Botox doctors and a rentable Rolls-Royce Phantom. The complex houses 283 units plus a penthouse level on the top floor.
6624 Telegraph Ave., Oakland, CA 94609
Bill Wilson, Ross Edwards, Dave Boyd, and Miller Ream founded Webcor Construction in 1971 in San Mateo, with the goal of delivering projects with unmatched innovation, efficiency and personal involvement. In 2007, Webcor became the latest acquisition by Obayashi, a major Japanese general construction firm. Webcor has a headquarters in San Francisco, and offices in Los Angeles, Alameda, San Jose and Honolulu. Webcor has received a multitude of awards, including the Gold Nugget Grand Award, the ENR California Contractor of the Year Award, and the ENR Top 400. Webcor also received an ISO 9001 Certification in 2013, the only California-based general contractor to have done so.
At 889 Francisco Street, Webcor is making its final push to deliver the mixed-use development Metropolis Los Angeles. The project is composed of four towers 18, 42, 40 and 56 stories high with a combined unit count of more than 1,500, together with a city center, and a connected parking for more than 1900 cars. Common amenities include community spaces, landscape features, pools, lounges, fitness spaces, and meeting and convention space. This 2-4 million square-foot development is aiming for LEED Silver certification.
Turner Construction Company
555 S Flower St, Ste 4220, Los Angeles, CA 90071
Turner Construction Company is a New York-headquartered international general contractor established in 1905. From humble beginnings, the firm now boasts a staff of 5,200 employees spread over 57 offices around the world, and an annual global portfolio of 1,500 projects and an aggregate value of $10 billion. Turner’s Los Angeles office was its first in California, established in 1964. The firm’s projects in Los Angeles have earned many accolades, including the ENR Top 100 Green Buildings Contractors, the BDC Top Contractor, the National Building Museum Honor Award, and the AGC in the Community Award.
Turner built the Wilshire Grand Central at 900 Wilshire Boulevard. The tower is the tallest building in the United States west of the Mississippi River at 73 stories high. This supertall mixed-use building houses 900 luxury hotel rooms, 20 floors of rentable, Class-A offices, more than 45,000 square feet of restaurant and upscale retail space, a 70th-floor sky-lobby with a signature observation deck and pool with sweeping views, a variety of innovative public plazas and gathering spaces, and below-ground parking for 1,250 cars. A testament to the building’s size is the concrete pour done for its foundation. The building achieved the largest continuous concrete pour in the world as certified by the Guinness World Records at more than 21,000 cubic yards, a record held from 2014 to 2015.