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Compton Hires Hotel Project 'Ramrod'

April 05, 1987|DAVID M. KINCHEN | Times Staff Writer

For its largest redevelopment project ever--a $28-million, 10-story hotel and convention center under construction at 111 Artesia Blvd.--the city of Compton wants to make sure there are no cost or time overruns.

That is why the city has hired a construction manager, according to Anthony R. Ybarra, deputy director of the city's Community Redevelopment Agency.

He said that Wexco International Corp., Century City, was chosen for the Compton Plaza Hotel and convention center because of its expertise in working with municipalities and the "vast amount of resources Wexco brings to the project."

The 200-room project will be the only hotel in the city when it is completed next March, Ybarra said, adding that the city has buildings that were once hotels that are now being used as apartments.

'Showcase Project'

The project will include more than 311,000 square feet of space on the five-acre site and will be built on top of a two-level parking structure. Tucon Development Co. is the designer and general contractor for the project and will operate the hotel when it is completed.

"This is a showcase project for the city of Compton," according to Stephen C. Wexler, president of Wexco. "Our role is to ensure that all the contractors, consultants and others involved in the project work together according to the master plan and meet the requirements of completion on time, within budget and up to quality specifications."

Ybarra said that the redevelopment project will mean more jobs, an improved tax base and much needed business development in the city.

"We're looking at more than $400,000 the first year in sales taxes, property taxes and business licenses, with up to $500,000 a year after the third or fourth year of operation," he said.

None Exceeded Budget

Since its founding in 1971, Wexco has been involved in more than 4,000 private sector and government projects worth more than $4 billion. None of these projects has exceeded its budget or gone beyond the projected completion date, Wexler said.

He pointed out that construction management and claims avoidance services of the kind offered by Wexco are a necessity today because construction projects traditionally run well beyond time and cost estimates and contract values.

"In addition to having the highest failure rate of any industry in the nation, more than 35%, the construction industry--our largest with more than 12% of the gross national product--also creates a mind-boggling backlog in our judicial systems," Wexler said.

Construction claims amount to nearly $1.5 billion a year, he said, with many of the problems that result in these claims coming from top management rather than the construction workers on the job.

In addition to project management, critical-path method scheduling, claims and claims prevention and general management consulting, Wexler's firm offers computer software for construction concerns.

His Wexpro Software Systems Co. was recently formed to provide the construction industry with microcomputer software that was originally developed for Wexco.

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