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Commercial Observer: Top Young Professionals 2024

Sourced from Commercial Observer
by Julia Echikson – June 21, 2024

Maxwell Williams’s fascination with real estate and construction took hold at a young age with the childhood home that his parents built in Chicago’s Hyde Park neighborhood.

“When my grandfather picked me up from school, we drove by the property and watched what was a hole in the ground grow into the home I grew up in,” Williams said. “I became really fascinated with the labor and expertise that it takes to build well and efficiently.”

Now Williams oversees his own construction projects at global construction management consultancy MGAC, projects that are understandably much larger in scale. These include 1000 Market Street in San Francisco. HomeRise, a nonprofit that helps people experiencing homelessness get back on their feet, wanted to renovate the four-story historic building, which was built in 1913.

The project was challenging. Take the building’s cornice, a decorative molding located by the roof that was rotten and needed to be rehabilitated to prevent leakage.

“It was a balancing act between how much work we need to do versus how much work we can save,” the Lehigh University industrial engineering grad said. “We could have gotten rid of [the molding] and done a simple rooftop. But considering this had historic implications, and our contractual responsibility to the city, we had to replicate what was there.”

In the end, Williams’s team used sheet metal bases and polymers to rebuild the accents. “We pretty much went through the whole nine yards in terms of piecemealing this,” the project manager said.

Today, the property is home to 58 people. “It was just an incredible experience to be a part of and facilitate,” Williams said.

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