After the addition of a new parts and sales area, the expansion of Stowers Corporate headquarters is complete.
As East Tennessee’s CAT® dealer since 1960, Stowers supplies sales, parts, and services for the entire Caterpillar line including machines, engines, and generators. In 2017, Stowers contracted Hickory for a 16,350-square-foot, two-story expansion with a training facility, new office space, large conference room and meeting space, two kitchens, and restrooms.
While Hickory constructed the 2017 addition, design work for a new parts and sales area was underway. Hickory’s exceptional performance on the initial expansion led Stowers to contract the team again for the parts and sales project.
“Thanks to our performance on the first expansion, working closely with all team members, Stowers brought us in early on in their next phase of construction to meet a tight deadline,” says Hickory Vice President of Commercial Operations, Chris Duncan.
The parts and sales renovation included gutting 8,000 square feet and constructing a completely new layout designed by architecture firm, Blankenship & Partners. In addition, Hickory put the finishing touches on the truck shop and service department by updating the life safety systems, electrical systems, and HVAC systems. The project required close coordination and an aggressive schedule to ensure Stowers could start 2018 with a new facility.
During the build, Hickory worked to ensure the daily operations of Stowers employees were minimally impacted by construction. The team set up a conference trailer that allowed Stowers to continue to provide sales, rentals, parts, and service for CAT® machines. Hickory also installed a fire suppression system in the server room. This required special attention as the server is the main hub for all of Stowers’ operations, as well as their direct line to CAT®.
“We were able to accommodate [Stowers] so that our work didn’t affect their daily operations,” says Duncan. “In fact, their performance was the best it had been in several years. It was rewarding to hear that we didn’t hinder Stowers — but instead helped them.”
Throughout the entire process of the build, Hickory cherished collaborating with a talented and determined group of professionals. “We had a really good organized team,” says Duncan. “The owner, Blankenship & Partners — it was a great group to work with.”