In the Beginning:
Direct Grading and Paving evolved from the concept of providing equipment solutions for General Contractors in the Las Vegas valley. Mel Westwood was working for another paving company in 1991 and was overall very interested with the heavy equipment industry. In his quest to pursue earthworks, he became limited in how he could perform working for another company. Mel decided he did not want to settle for less and knew he could provide service on a much higher level. Knowing he wanted to do something with Heavy Equipment, seeing firsthand how a larger heavy equipment contractor operated, he decided to open an equipment rental company.
Virtual Construction began in 1999 and started providing larger, more expensive pieces of equipment to contractors and subcontractors throughout the valley. As a result of the boom in the Las Vegas valley, Virtual Construction grew from having a couple pieces of equipment to a couple dozen rather quickly. After a couple years of providing equipment for contractors and subcontractors, Mel again decided that this wasn't the level he wanted to operate. He wanted to deal with the owners and contractors first hand to assure they were getting the true performance they deserved from the equipment.
That is when he formed Direct Grading and Paving in 2001. The mission for Direct Grading and Paving was to provide first class service and production from the equipment they were already paying top dollar to have onsite. With a very rapid growth chart to adapt to the fast paced construction industry, Direct kept the pace and held its mark on target.
The Growing Years:
Our first equipment yard was where the company really started. The yard, along with some equipment and other resources, was acquired from Southern Nevada Paving. The yard wasn't much to look at but it was our home. It had an old office building and a beat up shop.
In 2009, the office caught on fire and burned down. This was devastating and immediately brought everyone together. The whole company was franticly trying to put out the fire, running in and out and trying to save as much as possible, all while the fire department was trying to put the fire out. After the fire, there wasn't much left of the office and it was definitely not a place to conduct business. We soon moved to a temporary office on the top of Charleston near Boca Park. The shop, however, was on the opposite side of the yard, enabling us to keep work going there.
We kept busy, considering the circumstances, and have recently found a new resting place. Diane (our controller) found a new office with a yard that perfectly suited our needs. The new yard is located right off the I-15 freeway between Cheyenne and Civic Center. Easy access with plenty of room for our equipment and trucks makes business run smoothly.
Where we're going:
This new location marks a milestone in the history of Direct Grading and Paving. We have been planning to open an aggregate division for some time now and have recently found a few opportunities that will help take us there.