BY MAUREEN N. MARATITA
Journal Staff

Stewart

“In the next ten years there’s going to be a lot of work there on Guam just on the military side,” Keith J. Stewart, president of the Pacific Rim Group of Companies, said.

Historically, he said, Pacific Rim’s primary market has not been military construction. “The lion’s share has not been military work; it’s been private work.” Now, he said, “We have our feet planted in public as well as private work,” he said.

Pacific Rim Constructors Inc. was awarded a $36 million stand-alone Japanese-funded or mamizu contract Sept. 9 for Phase II  of the construction of utilities and site improvements, specifically the main and commercial gates at the Marine Corps Base Camp Blaz, which is next to the Naval Computer and Telecommunications Station Guam, just west of Andersen Air Force Base in Finegayan. Work is due to be completed by 2023, according to Journal files.

The work to be performed includes, but is not limited to, construction of a main gate and a commercial/tactical vehicle gate to provide installation security.

Pacific Rim was also one of five Guam companies awarded July 12, 2018 an indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity multiple award design-build construction contract (or MACC) for construction projects “located primarily within the Naval Facilities Engineering Command Marianas area of responsibility.” The MACC is also known as the “Small Business MACC. Work under that 60-month contract is due to end in 2023 and has a combined maximum dollar value estimated at $240 million in 2018.

Stewart said, “We’ve got a couple of task orders in the SB MAC … There’s probably $6 million to $7 million in the SB MACC that we’re doing — smaller deals … good projects.”

According Journal files, also in line for award is a task order for the oil and gas pipeline hardening at at Tiyan. Bids were due at NavFac Pacific June 15, after the original date was pushed back. Proposals were due at NavFac Pacific June 15, after the original date was pushed back.

Pacific Rim is finishing the GTA Ram Telecom cable landing facility and data center.

Photo courtesy of Pacific Rim Group of Companies

As to private sector work, Stewart said, “We’re just finishing up the GTA Data Center,” a $13 million project. TeleGuam Holdings LLC which does business as GTA and Ram Telecom International announced on June 29, 2019 they had entered a joint venture to construct a cable landing facility and data center in Piti through Gateway Network Connections LLC, according to Journal files. 

The data center includes “a new concrete structure that has unique/extensive mechanical and electrical requirements,” Stewart told the Journal in a previous interview. As the termination center for multiple data lines coming to Guam from other countries in the Pacific Rim, a central plant will meet the stringent air conditioning requirements while backup generators will provide sufficient power when needed.

Pacific Rim is also building Phase II of the Ironwood Villa Del Mar affordable housing. “That’s 88 units. We’ll be finishing that in the second quarter of next year,” Stewart said.

Financed by Bank of Guam, Ironwood’s Phase I with 50 units opened in Toto on Oct. 25, 2019, with a groundbreaking held the same date for Phase II. Ironwood’s first development was in Dededo.

In the Northern Mariana Islands, the Pacific Rim group has a number of projects in play.

Stewart is managing member of Isa Villas Partners LLC, which is building affording housing in Saipan.

“We’re working on pre-construction right now for Isa Villas Phase II,” he said. “We’re hoping to close in December, with Bank of Guam providing the construction loan and the Berkshire Group purchasing the tax credits.”

Phase II is on the same property on the corner of Guguan and Anatahan Drive on Capitol Hill as Phase I — also with a combination of units with a variety of bedrooms, according to Journal files.  Isa Villas Partners teamed with Tang’s Corp.’s Guma Familia Estates, to combine tax credits of both groups for Phase II.

The developments are through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Low Income Housing Tax Credit program, which is overseen by the Northern Marianas Housing Corp. Core Tech Capital provided a construction loan and consulting for Phase 1, Rim Architects is the leading design team and Hofschneider Engineering Corp. processed the permits. Pacific Rim Land Development LLC is the general contractor for the project.

Phase I consists of 27 units and Phase 2 of 74 units. As to when construction of Phase II would begin, Stewart said, “We’re hoping right after the first of the year.”

Pacific Rim Land Development Inc. was awarded the design-build of the Bridge Investment Group’s Tinian Diamond Hotel and Casino Casino – a $16 million project that is due to be branded a Wyndham resort near Jones Beach — formerly Kammer Beach.

“We’re on hold right now with the Tinian Casino. The owner was stopped because they need to update their CRM permit, as well as their agreement with the Port Authority.” Stewart said he expected resumption to be imminent.

Pacific Rim Land Development also undertook work for Imperial Pacific International LLC’s resort property in Garapan, built to complement to existing casino.

Aside from other legal action against it, IPI did not pay its $15.5 million license fee to the NMI government at the latest deadline for that of Aug. 12, and also has a lien against it for non-payment of taxes.

Pacific Rim received a $6.9 million judgment against IPI for work performed though that was appealed. “We’ve been paid $1.3 million,” Stewart said. “We have several writs that are approved by the federal court, but before we were able to finalize those, the local government filed a lien against IPI for access. We have signed a stipulation with the government and the attorney general’s office in the federal court; we’re basically partnered now with the government …,” Stewart said.

Pacific Rim had performed about $30 million in work on the resort, he said. “We got the project back up and running … once we had a mechanical lien, then they just stopped paying us.” The group had worked on the resort for about six months, Stewart said.

As to the progress of the resort, he said, “I would say it’s closer to three quarters finished than half.” mbj