What service provider doesn’t love it when a customer is looking for exactly that thing you offer? It doesn’t happen every day. But when it does it’s like a great duet, where both parties find themselves making “beautiful music together.”
Case in point: last May, Guarantee’s Quick Response (QR) team had the privilege of winning a tenant finish assignment for Rafco Properties in a building GECO originally had a hand in constructing, at Centene Plaza at 7700 Forsyth in Clayton. In many ways a standard turnkey tenant build out, the Rafco assignment involved an imaginative design that makes considerable use of advanced automation and lighting solutions. It’s the kind of assignment our QR guys especially enjoy: mixing craftsmanship and innovation, making systems and controls work together perfectly, while keeping the technology running behind it all perfectly invisible.
Creating two stories inside the Centene Tower’s mezzanine, Rafco’s offices have proved to be a showplace for Tobias Rafael, a member of the St. Louis region’s new generation of tech-savvy real estate developers. With a sure-footed vision for commercial real estate services, Rafael has a hands-on approach to “designing on a dime,” as he seeks, among other things, to optimize building systems integration. This makes him a demanding customer; but it also means that he’s especially loyal to providers who “get” his approach and respond with speed and precision.
From replacing corroded wiring in the slab in the bowels of 7711’s parking garage to installing ultra-efficient LED lighting in their entire basement parking areas, to emergency work on building elevator controls, all involve material improvements in quality and efficiency. And a number of these assignments were accomplished over a weekend so as to minimize the impact on tenants.
For Kevin Renaud, the GECO Supervisor who’s been onsite for most of them, “Often these jobs involve making bad things not happen. That’s when we’re able to keep a building and system from breaking down and disrupting the lives of Rafco’s customers and tenants. Many times it’s about testing and sometimes replacing equipment, monitoring and repairing when necessary, to preempt the downside of events that are just never allowed to occur.”