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Explore Years:

Construction News, October 2006

“Going the Distance”

O. Preston Smith, Chief Executive Officer and Michael E. Smith, Chief Operating Officer of Marathon Commercial Construction, L.L.C. in North Fort Worth share a good deal in common. They’ve both been involved in commercial general contracting for years, are both avid hunters and outdoorsmen, and even kind of look alike. But though they share the same last name and friendly demeanor, it was mere coincidence – not heredity – that brought these two together.

The two met at a company that Michael and a couple of other guys started in Irving, and worked there together for about five years. Michael stayed on with the company for a while, and Preston delved into some other projects before the two decided to combine their talents and form their own enterprise. “And as the world turns, we got together the early part of this year and decided we wanted to put out our own shingle and start doing our own thing together; so that’s what we did.” Preston said. “Our corporate papers came back showing we were incorporated on the Fourth of July. we couldn’t have planned that any better if we had tried.”

The mission behind Marathon Commercial Construction is to provide clients with the most responsive, efficient, and cost effective option for construction, general contracting, construction management and design build services, according to Preston. Preston and Michaels’ resume of past projects includes religious facilities, banks, medical, as well as general office buildings, hospital work, and retail centers. They intend to continue in that direction with Marathon Commercial Construction.

Preston says they are able to meet client needs through an approach that utilizes a multi-faceted strategy of prompt owner communication, adept subcontractor management, and a highly skilled application of construction methods and materials. “With these three approaches, we are able to maximize the efforts of all parties involved.” he said. “This results in a construction schedule that is typically faster than industry standards, accelerating the point by which our clients can begin to occupy their space.”

“This approach also produces greater savings for our clients due principally to the fact that a well-coordinated, seamless integration of building systems requires less manpower to complete.”

Both Smiths are highly involved within the community which has created a steady flow of business referrals for Marathon. Preston has been involved with the North Texas Chapter of the Associated Builders and Contractors (ABC), primarily in legislative affairs, and was also appointed commissioner for the Citizens Committee for the Future of Fort Worth by the Fort Worth City Council.

Michael has worked extensively with ABC North Texas since 1996, is a current board member, and has chaired various committees, including the Programs Committee and Education Committee. He is also a Cub Scout leader and team leader with his church.

“One benefit of both of us being involved in civic activities and trade organizations is you end up with a good, broad network of people who are interested in what you’re doing,” Preston said. “Referrals are the meat and potatoes of what we do.”

Smith and Smith aim to build on their track record for providing a superior product faster and within the business confinements of the owner. Preston said. “It’s not rocket science, but being able to maintain a consistent strategy of saving the owner money and providing the project under schedule by effectively managing the contractor base and project costs is our ultimate goal.” – mdo