Mackee Construction Ltd has earned a stellar reputation for delivering a series of outstanding healthcare projects across Ireland but, as we discovered when we travelled to West Cork to meet director JP Keane, the versatile and highly-skilled company consistently brings optimal levels of workmanship to bear on a diverse range of commercial and residential works.
Boasting 20 years of experience and expertise, Mackee Construction is an industry-leading general building company based in West Cork. Fronted by Bantry native JP Keane and Bandon man Con McNamara, Mackee is renowned island-wide for delivering high-quality projects across a wide range of sectors, including healthcare, education, leisure and residential.
At the time of writing this, Mackee have two major healthcare projects under construction, one in Baltinglass, County Wicklow a state of the art 18,600 sq. ft. Primary Care Centre development which includes an ambulance base, GP headquarters with health related accommodation, GP suites, offices and staff facilities, due for completion in early November 2020. The second is a 90 bed nursing home adjacent to a newly constructed Primary Care Centre completed by Mackee in 2016.
The Baltinglass development site also consists of 64 residential units (comprising of the redevelopment of Rathcoran House an old presentation convent converting into 16 apartments along with the new build of 40 houses). Mackee are proud to be chosen as Remcoll Group’s preferred building partners. Remcoll have developed and delivered numerous social and affordable accommodation units across many counties in Ireland.
Remcoll are passionate about preserving the heritage of sites that they have developed including their Skibbereen site which was recently partially destroyed in a fire, however within hours Mackee Construction had their team of specialists on site to stabilise and secure the remaining structure of the Sisters of Mercy Chapel and Convent to prevent further collapse.
Mackee Construction boasts an excellent track record of successfully completing large scale projects over the years and have worked island-wide with the Remcoll Group on multiple projects.
“Currently our teams are working on the 64 social housing units in Baltinglass. Remcoll are delivering 56 units to Respond Housing Body and 8 to the Peter McVerry Trust, we also have addition teams delivering 42 housing units in Sneem, Kerry which is a restoration of a ghost estate that has been lying idle since 2008. So, all in all, we have plenty going on right now.”
Meanwhile, the 90-bed nursing home facility in Carnew will cater for up to 90 residents, over an area of 3,753 square metres adjacent to Carnew Primary Care Centre on the Gorey Road. This site is one that Mackee’s team are very familiar with as they completed the Carnew Primary Care Centre in 2016 – a two storey building with 1,232 square metres of floor space. The project included a health centre, clinic, health related units, staff offices and meeting rooms. “The nursing home in Carnew will be the largest and most modern in the area,” JP notes. “We started on site in June and it’s a twelve-month programme so we should be out of there in the middle of 2021. Baltinglass Primary Care Centre is close to completion and will be handed over any day now.”
Mackee are generating direct employment for a team of 30 and with up to 200 personnel on site at any given time, Mackee Construction are also working on a number of other projects at present, including a novel new sports hall at Mount Mercy College in Cork city and the completion of 42 houses in a ghost estate in Sneem, (having previously carried out similar projects for private clients in counties Tipperary and Roscommon) not to mention various one-off houses around County Cork.
“The sports hall at Mount Mercy College is an unusual build in that it’s a prefabricated metal frame structure made by Sprung – with a cladded roof – it is coming from Canada,” JP continues. “It’s kind of like slicing an egg in half lengthways, an oval building looking at it from the sky with the roof curving down to the ground and no walls.”
With the flexibility and expertise to complete any construction project, residential or commercial, large or small, from a new build or restoration to maintenance or even stove installations, Mackee’s dedicated, hardworking team offer high standards of craftsmanship, knowledge, value for money and quality of work. The directors are hands-on and the keenest attention to detail is a given on every project undertaken, from start to finish.
“We project manage the work ourselves, I have been a permanent fixture in Wicklow for the past number of months. Thankfully, it’s been a very busy year for us even with coronavirus, it’s surprisingly difficult to source labour at the moment, it’s a strange time we are in.
“However, we have excellent staff working with us, both in-house and subcontractors, they all play a key role in the success of our company. We recruit local staff with local knowledge as you cannot beat that, also it is very important to us knowing that we are supporting the economy in rural villages and communities.”
As for the qualities and attributes that have seen Mackee Construction assume a place at the forefront of the industry over the past 20 years, JP replies: “Hard work is key, obviously, and proving your commitment to your client. Understanding the client’s needs and trying to fulfil those needs. Some contractors are only in it for one job and will come in at a low price, but we are more level-headed and grounded going in and are always looking at the next job and the bigger picture. You need to be consistently able to meet client expectations and leave strong work behind you.”
While getting projects over the line on time has always been a strength of Mackee Construction, the volatile marketplace that has prevailed since March means this can no longer be guaranteed for obvious reasons. “Obviously, you are going to do your level best to finish every job within the programme, but to an extent the status quo has gone out the window,” JP concludes. “Everyone is doing their best in uncertain times. We are fully Covid-19 compliant and we are leaving no stone unturned to make sure everybody is 100% safe and satisfied. It’s more difficult now to meet deadlines than ever before, though. There was a skim / plaster shortage from July until September, when it was being rationed, and now it’s timber along with the many other things Covid brings. There’s something different coming along every week but we are adapting to it and remain fully focussed on project delivery and client satisfaction.”
Mackee Construction Ltd.,
Bandon and Bantry,
Tel: 023 8843282
Email: [email protected]
This article was published in Building Ireland Magazine, January 2021, Vol 7 No 1