Collen Construction Ltd motors to success

14 Jan , 2019  

Collen was one of the big winners at the 2018 Irish Construction Industry Awards ceremony which took place in Dublin’s City West Hotel on June 14 last, scooping the awards for Retail Project of the Year and Commercial  Project of the Year (large category).

Shortlisted in five categories, the seventh-generation family-owned construction business received the Retail Project of the Year accolade for its successful completion of Audi Centre’s new €10 million flagship showroom in Sandyford, Co. Dublin, which is Audi’s principal retail and aftersales service centre in Ireland. The scope of work included the demolition of an existing building on the site and the construction of a four-storey Audi car showroom, including roof carpark, workshops, car decks and ancillary accommodation. Works also included associated fit-out works of showroom and workshops, associated site works, drainage and statutory services installations. The total ground floor area was 8,750m2.

On a memorable night for the company, Collen also won the Commercial Project of the Year (Large Category) for its €41 million, 11 storey, Block H, Central Park project in Leopardstown, which is only down the road from the new Audi Centre.

“It’s great recognition for the company to win two awards,” enthuses Paddy Flood, the project manager on the Audi Centre job.

“I was aware that we were up for an award, but it came as a complete surprise to win and we’re over the moon about it. The project was completed on time and within budget last October – 12 months after the commencement date.

“This wouldn’t have been achieved without the help and hard work of so many different people. Working alongside me on-site were the project engineer Anthony Byrne and site foremen Sorin Culica and Colin Butterly. Safety officers James Fearon and Lorna Duffy were part of our wonderful construction team. Support also came from senior contracts manager John Sweeney, commercial director Donal Hennessy and the design team, who were brilliant throughout.

“EMD Architects, whose lead architect was Bren McEvoy, along with DBFL Consulting Engineers (structural engineer) and Baker O’Reilly (services engineer), also played key roles in the project. It was a real team effort. Everyone rowed in from start to finish, including the sub-contractors who worked hard to ensure it was completed on time,” added the Wexford native. He also pointed out that this wasn’t the first time Collen Construction had completed an Audi Centre in Dublin, having also completed Audi North for Joe Duffy Motors.

In Paddy’s absence, John Sweeney and Donal Hennessy were presented with the Retail Project of the Year award by Linda Byrne of sponsors Bunzl Cleaning & Safety Supplies. Donal Duggan of the Audi Centre representing the client, was also present.

Paddy recalls how the family atmosphere that exists within Collen was a major factor in him joining the company in June 2015.

“For a big company, they were very family-orientated. That appealed to me very much,” the affable project manager remembers.

“Everyone is made feel part of the family, including the sub-contractors. My first job for Collen was as site manager on the Ashfield Student Accommodation development in UCD. I’m currently working on a €20 million project in Blackrock which involves the demolition and rebuild of Enterprise House. Things are really busy at the moment.”

Established in 1810, Collen Construction Ltd is one of Ireland’s leading construction firms with a strong reputation for building quality and excellence. The company – which had a turnover of €200 million last year – has successfully tendered and negotiated projects for a range of clients, including multinational corporations, private companies, local authorities and state authorities. Completing projects within programme, meeting budget constraints and providing a quality service has seen Collen forge strong relationships with a wide range of clients.

Collen provides data centre, commercial, residential, industrial, design and building services that covers most market sectors and it is a major player in the data-centre sector in Ireland and Europe. It employs 230 people directly, the majority of whom are based on sites in Ireland and Sweden, with support staff operating out of its Dublin office which is based on the East Wall Road. It also has offices in Cork, Athlone, Frankfurt and Stockholm.

Among the contractor’s current projects are the extension and refurbishment of the Frascati Shopping Centre in Blackrock, the development of the seven-storey Block I, Central Park in Sandyford and three large data centres in the Dublin area for two major international clients.

In March 2015 Collen became the first construction firm in Ireland to transition the new ISO 9001:2015 and ISO 14001:2015, in addition to the OHSAS 18001 9 (2007) safety accreditation.

This year Collen were delighted to receive a call from Fergal O’Byrne (Head of Business Excellence of NSAI) to request a partnership approach to the migration of the new world class safety standard 45001.  The official launch took place on our Abbey Street site on 21st February and two months later Collen became one of the first organisations in the world to achieve certification to the ISO 45001:2018 Workplace Health and Safety standard.  With continuous improvement in mind and constant striving for excellence, Collen became EIQA members in April and will go through the rigorous EIQA audit in July that will complement the existing ISO 9001:2015 accredited system.

Commenting on this, the company’s chairman Neil Collen said: “From this great achievement, let us gain further strength, enthusiasm and belief, which fuels us and thereby creates the environment where we can go on to even bigger and better accomplishments. This in turn leads to job satisfaction and job security for all.”

Tommy Drumm worked for Collen between 1978 and 1982 and re-joined as managing director  Collen Construction in 2015. Tommy became a household name in the GAA in 1983 when he captained a 12-man Dublin team to a famous All-Ireland football final victory (over Galway) at Croke Park. His leadership qualities have been very much evident in Collen’s recent growth and success.

Collen Construction Ltd

River House

East Wall Road

Dublin 3

Telephone: +353 (0)1 8745411

Fax: +353 (0)1 8365779

Email: [email protected]

Web: www.collen.com

Taken from Building Ireland Magazine, September 2018, Vol 4 No 8