Long Island CM Thrives on Multifamily Push
Originally published by: LIBN.com — May 28, 2019
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Multifamily Affair: Tom Flaherty, Kevin Flaherty, Kristin Flaherty, Bruce Meltzer and Justin Meltzer head up operations at Triangle Building Products. (Photo by Judy Walker)
While the recent increase in multifamily housing projects is working to meet the area’s demands for diverse housing opportunities, it’s also boosting business for an expanding local supplier.
It’s been a busy time for the folks at Medford-based Triangle Building Products. The company, which manufactures prefabricated walls, trusses and other construction components, has been supplying crucial framing material and other building pieces for several major multifamily developments, including Garvies Point in Glen Cove, Greybarn in North Amityville, The Seasons at Elwood and many others.
As a result, 2018 was Triangle’s best year yet, as sales revenue jumped 35 percent from 2017. And so far this year, sales revenue at Triangle is already 13 percent ahead of last year, according to Triangle CFO Fred Gold. The firm also recently increased its number of employees from 68 to 90.
Photo by Judy Walker
Triangle’s client list reads like a who’s who in multifamily development on Long Island. The company’s customers include RXR Realty, AvalonBay Communities, Engel Burman Group, Mill Creek Residential, Rechler Equity Partners, Heatherwood, The Benjamin Companies and many more.
Very much a family affair, Triangle is run by Bruce Meltzer, its president, and Tom Flaherty, its executive vice president and their children Justin Meltzer, Kristin Flaherty and Kevin Flaherty.
Bobby Peters, Fred Gold, Bruce Meltzer and Tom Flaherty in the Triangle Building Products yard. (Photo by Judy Walker)
The firm’s forerunner, a company called Triangle Pacific Corporation, was run by Bruce’s father Abe Meltzer in the 1970s. The original firm, a major supplier of millwork and kitchen cabinets in the New York area, was acquired by Armstrong World Industries. But Bruce Meltzer purchased TPC’s Long Island operation in 1993 and founded a new company called Triangle Building Products, refocusing its efforts towards multifamily development.
Meltzer said while single-family homebuilding has slowed over the years, the shift toward multifamily housing has lifted Triangle’s sales.
“Single-family home sales are mediocre at best,” Meltzer said. “But particularly on Long Island, there seems to be an insatiable need for rental apartments. And this type of construction is also prevalent in assisted-living developments.”
Tom Flaherty said that the company’s recent success is tied to the demand for the type of prefab framing packages Triangle offers because of labor shortages and cost control.
“We’re the only manufacturer of building components on Long Island that provides turn-key framing services,” Flaherty said. “And we use all local labor.”
A carpenter handles a wall section inside the company’s sprawling Medford plant. (Photo by Judy Walker)
Triangle employs union carpenters for all of its production. The company uses 50 million board feet of lumber annually, most of which is brought in by rail facilities through Sherwood Lumber in Holtsville and the Brookhaven Rail Terminal in Yaphank. The firm’s carpenters saw and assemble Triangle’s products throughout six buildings that total about 80,000 square feet on the company’s 8.4-acre property on Route 112.
Bobby Peters, the firm’s vice president of manufacturing, keeps the operation humming. Peters’ crew utilizes a computerized auto-puck system that has cut jigging time from 15 minutes to just 45 seconds. It now takes an average of just three to four minutes to manufacture an average-sized truss. The company can produce a truss as long as 64 feet and 12 feet long.
Though it specializes in trusses and framing for multifamily construction, Triangle also offers windows, doors, millwork, cabinets and more.
For Engel Burman, one of its more active customers, Triangle supplies its trusses and other building components towards the construction of the developer’s Seasons communities and its Bristal assisted living facilities.
Scott Burman, president of Engel Burman Construction, said his firm has enjoyed a long-standing relationship with the Medford manufacturer for more than 20 years.
“They’re one of our preferred subcontractors and have always delivered an exceptional product,” Burman said.