By: Colby Rose, Vice President & General Manager – Houston
The city of Houston has been an area of contention since oil prices began their sharp decline in the summer of 2014, plunging from more than $100 a barrel to less than $30 in February. Known as the “energy capital of the world,” the city has been hit the hardest by what is considered the worst oil downturn since the 1980s. According to the Greater Houston Partnership, more than 3,700 energy-related establishments are located within the Houston Metropolitan Statistical Area. The crash resulted in widespread production cuts, bankruptcies and layoffs in the oil and gas industry – with the Houston economy at its mercy.
While the nation and the world focuses on Houston’s troubles, Cadence McShane is looking toward a bigger and brighter future. I joined the firm in January 2008 as the wrath of the Great Recession was turning the nation’s economy upside-down. Like most major industries, the construction sector fought to exist. We learned to diversify, work harder than ever before and construct high-quality buildings under the most difficult circumstances. I had the privilege of being a member of the Cadence McShane team during these hard times, and I know firsthand that we are stronger and geared for greater success because of them.
I am assured that the same fundamentals that got us through the recession will carry us through the challenges we face in Houston. Since taking on my role as vice president last year, we have made great strides in securing new clients and demonstrating our capabilities while fostering existing relationships. Our portfolio continues to grow with a diverse range of product types including multi-family, industrial, K-12 and office projects. We also enjoy an expanding team of dedicated professionals that have embraced our culture of entrepreneurial spirit and relentless service.
Despite obvious challenges, we see many reasons to be optimistic here in Houston. For starters, Houston still holds a spot as a top-five city in the country and is projected to move up to number three, surpassing Chicago in the next four to five years. This downturn we are experiencing is relative to what Houston is capable of at full capacity, which greatly outperforms a majority of the nation. The Houston Region is also more diversified than it was in previous oil crashes. Houston is home to one of the biggest international ports, putting us at the epicenter of global trade. We also have Texas Medical Center, the largest medical center in the world, consisting of numerous hospitals, research facilities and affiliated universities. Education funding is also up as several educational bonds have been passed throughout the greater Houston area, indicating population growth.
It’s safe to say that Houston’s recovery, expansion and ultimate prosperity is within reach, and Cadence McShane is ready. With the capacity and proven track record providing design/build, general construction and construction management services – we’re ready to put our experience to work for you.