Rod and Marian Stawnychy launched Mid-City Construction Management Inc. in 1980. Rod, president, recalls starting the company with one Caterpillar 931B Track Loader and one lowboy, digging basements, and providing service to both residential and commercial customers. Now, 41 years later, the company employs more than 200 and has a top-of-the-line fleet of skid steers, loaders, track hoes and tandem trucks and provides service across a variety of excavation, underground, and paving projects.
“Rod was a sandbox kind of guy,” says Daniel Stawnychy, Mid-City Construction Management Inc. COO and Rod and Marian’s son. “He was really into Tonka trucks and whatnot. When he was older he did some work in development with his father, but between taking up trucking and buying himself a small track loader, he and Marian decided to go into business. That’s how Mid-City was started.”
Daniel joined the family business officially in the late ’90s after spending some time during his high school years employed in the shop during the summers. He’s had a front row seat to watch the family business grow.
“In 2015 we acquired Stelmach Construction, a paving company. Our most recent acquisition is the concrete placing company Golden Spike Contracting,” says Daniel. “Mel Richardson and his team at Golden Spike bring more than 30 years of concrete finishing work, enabling us to continue offering the best in coloured and stamped concrete, architectural and blasted/exposed design, base work, concrete removal or rehabilitation, and parking lot maintenance.”
Acquisitions and planned growth are just two strategies Mid-City uses to remain competitive in the industry. Leveraging technology is also important to the brand. Currently, GPS survey assistance and grade control systems are used on all grading projects to ensure outstanding accuracy and time efficiency. Grade control, in particular, allows the team to grade down to the millimeter with fewer passes and time than traditional methods. Less operational time means more savings for Mid-City customers.
Saving customers time and money is all part of the corporate values, which include exceeding expectations, having a passion for company success, striving for company unity, always being driven to improve, and above all – an unwavering dedication to customer satisfaction.
“Corporate culture is important to us,” says Daniel. “We pride ourselves on our culture and our team. The way we operate has enabled us to retain the expertise and loyalty of long-term team members. We have people that have worked with us for 10+ years. The longest-term employee has been here for over 32 years.”
The company is also proud to remain an independent family business as this gives it the advantages of being able to directly reduce downtime, lower costs by eliminating third party contracting, take care of maintenance and repairs faster, and upgrade equipment without the need for head office approval. These attributes help Mid-City not only provide fast, efficient, cost-effective service to customers, they also help the company maintain a lower carbon footprint.
You’ve encountered Mid-City’s work around the city. Some of their projects include the following:
• The expansion and renovation at Fort Edmonton Park. There has been extensive construction happening at Fort Edmonton Park over the last few years. Mid-City is very proud to be a part of this project that means so much to the community of Edmonton. In 2018 and 2019 Mid-City did all the excavation work for the Indigenous People’s Experience, bringing people back to 1846 and 1920 First Nations and Metis cultural heritages. Mid-City also worked on the 1920s themed Carnival Midway.
• Centennial Park expansion road in Sherwood Park. Mid-City was the general contractor for Strathcona County and was responsible for all excavation, underground utilities, concrete, paving and landscaping in 2019.
• The new CapitalCare Norwood expansion re-development project. This will provide over 40,000 square meters of space for continuing care and post-acute care for Edmonton area residents. Mid-City was responsible for all the underground utilities in 2019. This project is slated to be complete in early 2024.
• The Beaumont Sport & Recreation Centre (Aqua-Fit Phase 2) expansion and modernization. Included is a NHL sized ice surface, an indoor field house, a high school gymnasium, a climbing wall and running track. Construction started in the fall of 2018 and was completed in 2020. Mid-City did the excavation, underground utilities, and paving on the project.
• Discovery Park. This is a commercial and industrial area located north of the Edmonton International Airport. Mid-City has been very proud to work with Remington Development Corporation since the first phase in 2019, doing the excavation and underground utilities scope of work.
In addition to major projects like these, you’ll see Mid-City’s white trucks and blue logo around Edmonton daily on a variety of paving projects, doing parking lot repairs, helping with broken or collapsed water and sewer lines, removing snow and sweeping out parking lots.
As with most businesses in the region, COVID-19 has posed challenges.
“It has affected the market,” says Daniel. “As an essential service we were able to continue operating without interruption and with the applicable safety protocols in place, but costs for materials, etc., have gone up, which makes our commitment to fast, cost-effective service for customers even more important. We know that businesses across all sectors are facing similar challenges right now.”
Another challenge that Mid-City faced was the passing of Marian Stawnychy. Not only was she by Rod’s side launching the business from the start, she was a key part of the company in its operations, heart and soul. Taken too soon, she is deeply missed by all and her legacy will always have a positive impact on the company.
Yet, be it business or personal challenges, Mid-City is incredibly resilient and focused on the reliable service for which it is known.
Daniel says, “One of the things I enjoy the most is that we are a local, family owned and operated business from right here in Edmonton. Our team is like a big extended family. We love Edmonton because it is a big city, but it feels like a small community. The connections are close, especially in construction.”
Community is important to Mid-City. The company enjoys supporting charitable interests like Sport Central and Shiloh Youth Ranch. Sport Central’s primary goal is to “retrieve, repair, recycle and redistribute sports equipment to kids who cannot afford the opportunity to play,” while Shiloh Youth Ranch is on a mission to boost the abilities and esteem of youth aged 7-17 through a mix of summer camps and year-round mentorship programs. Mid-City believes strongly in the youth of today and the impact they will have on our community’s future, and is proud to make a difference alongside these organizations.
For Mid-City, being community minded doesn’t stop at giving back. By joining and a supporting a variety of industry organizations they are an effective force and voice in improving their industry too – while continuing to learn from others within it.
“We are active across a broad spectrum of associations including but not limited to Alberta Construction Association, COR, Contractor Check, Alberta Human Services, Partnerships in Injury Reduction and Alberta Road Builders,” says Daniel. “Each association provides a different point of view. We learn from them as each brings something different and valuable to our business, as well as helps open the doors to opportunities through collaborative networking.”
If Rod, Daniel and the team could tell potential clients one thing it would be this: “Give us a shot.” Working with Mid-City means working with an experienced team that is active in providing the best service for customers, enjoys giving back to the community, has a plan for sustainable growth, and stays on top of the education and technology needed to remain competitive yet environmentally conscious.
“We thank our clients, vendors, great staff, and community for helping us enjoy more than 40 great years,” concludes Daniel. “The next step is continued growth without ever losing sight of our main goal – complete customer satisfaction.”