Fresno office exterior


A construction firm serving the Central Valley for nearly 135 years recently opened an office in Fresno.

Concord-based Swinerton opened its office at 1382 E. Alluvial Ave., Ste. 101, in Fresno in November to better serve local clients and execute over $300 million in construction projects.

Founded in 1888 in Bakersfield by Charles Lindgren, Swinerton really took hold in the Central Valley after the Great Bakersfield Fire of 1889 that destroyed most of the town, with the company being instrumental in its rebirth.

Swinerton is one of the earliest contractors in California, holding California Contractor License No. 92.

Notable Central Valley Projects include the T-Mobile Central Valley Customer Experience Center in Kingsburg and the Tachi Palace renovation and expansion.

Swinerton just broke ground on a four-story, 146,000 square-foot medical office for Kaiser Permanente in Fresno, the Orchard Plaza Medical Office. The complex will offer 138 high-tech exam rooms and will be served by 116 providers. It is expected to open in 2025.

Building a presence

Though Swinerton has always had a presence in the Fresno area, opening up a brick-and-mortar office in here allows the company to support existing clients, grow new clients and make a positive impact on the community, said Erich Klemme, senior superintendent at Swinerton.

“That’s why we build: To have a positive impact in the communities we live in,” said Erich Klemme, senior superintendent at Swinerton.

Since Swinerton serves the south valley, north valley and to the coast, having an office in Fresno means a central hub for quicker travel.

The team is going to be busy over the next three years with $300 million in construction projects of new educational institutions, health care facilities, civic structures and places of worship.

These projects are anticipated to generate over 400 new trade jobs to the region. Swinerton currently employs over 230 people that live in the Central Valley.

Other construction projects include the exterior retrofit of the B.F. Sisk Courthouse in Fresno, as well as a series of design-build renovations that incorporate lactation rooms into 15 separate courthouses throughout the region including Fresno, Madera and Porterville.

Swinerton also recently completed the expansion of a service station and convenience store, or “gasino,” that has 50 gaming stations at Tachi Palace Casino.


Unlike many construction firms that will contract different trades out, Swinerton has the unique ability to self-perform several different trades including demolition, drywall, general cleanup, specialties, doors, frames and hardware. That offers greater control over project timelines, Klemme said.

Swinerton also offers its services to other contractors, keep them busy all year round.

It is difficult to self-perform, Klemme said. A firm needs to be in a large market to have job after job lined up, keeping their workers in the area.

“That’s the challenge with self-performing — you have to keep craft services employed and you want to keep them working in the area. You have to keep them busy so you can take care of your people so they can stay here working locally,” Klemme said.

As the company grows, so will the need for qualified workers.

An advantage for Swinerton is that they are a signatory with labor unions and work with apprenticeship programs to hire workers directly.

Along with working with labor, Swinerton is involved with Fresno State, supporting its construction programs, information sessions, lectures and seeing the university as an agent that will develop talent to support the business in the years to come, Klemme said.

Swinerton also works with the Construction Industry Education Foundation, which supports high school students getting into trades programs.

The types of jobs are varied. Swinerton has a technology department to figure out the best ways to use the newest technologies and to train users.

When it comes to advancing technologies in construction, most of it is geared towards safety. In the office, Swinerton works to see what technologies could be used to better manage projects and communicate with clients.

There is an expectation that the demand for Swinerton’s services will grow in the area, which is why they decided to open an office in Fresno.

“We are very optimistic for the future of Swinerton in the Central Valley. The backlog is strong, we are chasing projects, we are going on job walks, we are in the community. I believe the future is bright,” Klemme said.