Wright-Ryan Spotlights Innovation at New Operations Center

April 22, 2024

Wright-Ryan, one of New England’s largest and most respected construction firms, is proud to share details surrounding their recently completed fabrication and field supervision facility at 15 Saunders Way in Westbrook, Maine. The facility occupies half of a 40,000 square foot building, one that was constructed by the Wright-Ryan team in close partnership with owner and developer, J.B. Brown & Sons, a leading commercial property management and development company based in Portland. This unique collaboration culminated in an innovative built environment, one where Wright-Ryan can continue their legacy of building for generations to come.

Known officially as Wright-Ryan’s Operations Center (Ops Center), the facility now serves as a pivotal cornerstone for the company, particularly as it commemorates its 40th anniversary this year. Spanning 20,000 square feet, the Ops Center is home to several of Wright-Ryan’s diversified lines of business and specialty services – including offices for the company’s Commercial Select Projects and Custom Millwork Groups, Residential Services Division, Field Supervision, Operations & Maintenance, and Field Operations Division. The facility provides a controlled environment and versatile workspace for each line of business – ranging from the construction of one-of-a-kind millwork and prefabricated materials to employee training. The Operations Center was built to accommodate Wright-Ryan’s growing team, while simultaneously supporting the company’s ethos surrounding custom work, collaboration, and emerging technologies.

“Our Operations Center is a testament to Wright-Ryan’s steadfast commitment to innovation,” explains Marc Bourgeois, Vice President of Commercial Select Projects for Wright-Ryan. “By prioritizing the completion of this dedicated facility, Wright-Ryan can enter its next phase of operations and look ahead to the next forty years, all while maintaining our company’s signature standard of quality. The space was thoughtfully built by our team to allow for evolving technologies and the expansion of services, providing even more value and efficiency for our clients.”

The completion of Wright-Ryan’s Operations Center was the product of a strong partnership with the site’s owner and developer, J.B. Brown & Sons. In 2007, the development company purchased a 30-acre site along Saunders Way and, initially, redeveloped a former dowel mill on the site into a 130,000+ square foot warehouse and office complex accommodating 12 businesses. The Saunders Way site continued to develop with the construction of additional warehouses as commercial needs arose. J.B. Brown & Sons later secured an approved site plan for a new, 40,000 square foot warehouse at 15 Saunders Way and reached out to Wright-Ryan to discuss construction services for the project. With both the size and location of the future building ideal for their new Operations Center, Wright-Ryan worked directly with J.B. Brown & Sons to secure a design-build agreement alongside a long-term lease negotiation to occupy half of 15 Saunders Way. With the plans in place, Wright-Ryan began ground-up construction on the entire building in Spring of 2021 and partnered with BILD Architecture on the design.

“At J.B. Brown, we look for quality tenants who align with our long-term vision. Wright-Ryan is not only a tenant, but a trusted partner,” said Vin Veroneau, President of J.B. Brown & Sons. “This development at 15 Saunders Way underscores the value that J.B. Brown places on cultivating enduring partnerships. We have had the pleasure of working with Wright-Ryan on several projects in the past, and we were confident in the level of work that they would deliver on this project. We’re thrilled that their Operations Center is accommodating their need for future growth and innovation, and we look forward to continuing our partnership with them for years to come.”

In tandem with the construction of their own Operations Center at 15 Saunders Way, the Wright-Ryan team was hired by J.B. Brown & Sons to construct and complete the second half of the 15 Saunders Way building for another longstanding tenant, PRC Industrial Supply. The local supplier needed a new warehouse space to house its operations and accompanying offices following a 40-year tenancy at their original space in downtown Portland. Wright-Ryan began work on the remaining 20,000 square feet within the 15 Saunders Way building, completing the project for PRC Industrial Supply in the same year.

“Making the move from downtown Portland to Westbrook provided PRC Industrial Supply the opportunity to consolidate our Gorham and Portland offices, streamlining our operations and connecting our team,” remarked Kevin Easler, Former Vice President, General Manager, PRC Industrial Supply. “Working with Wright-Ryan on the construction of our Saunders Way space was seamless and efficient, and we would not hesitate to reach out if we had another project in our pipeline.”

Wright-Ryan’s Operations Center was completed in 2022. Since its completion, the facility continues to be heavily utilized for a sweeping majority of the company’s projects and has allowed for the expansion of Wright-Ryan’s prefabrication capabilities. For more information on Wright-Ryan and their focus on innovation, please visit www.wright-ryan.com.

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