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Engineer Southland Consolidates in OC

Irvine engineering and construction company Southland Industries Inc. has shifted a plant and office from Long Beach to Garden Grove.

The move, undertaken earlier this year, follows Southland’s move of its headquarters from Long Beach to Irvine in early 2003.

“We decided if we were going to relocate, we would relocate closer to our customers,” said Andrew Fimiano, Southland’s chief executive. “A lot of them have their main offices around the John Wayne Airport area, near our headquarters. We’re more of a national company now, while in years past, we had a lot of business in the Long Beach area.”

Southland designs and builds plumbing, refrigeration and heating and cooling systems, making its own sheet metal and piping.

The company has done work for San Clemente-based ICU Medical Inc., Parker Hannifin Corp.’s Irvine operation and The Irvine Company’s Jamboree Center in Irvine.

Currently, Southland is working on Kaiser Permanente’s hospital and offices in Irvine. Nationally, Southland has been doing work on the Pentagon building as part of a 10-year project.

“That started as repair work following the Sept. 11 attacks but also is a total renovation,” Fimiano said.

In Garden Grove, Southland has moved into 82,000 square feet of industrial space at 7421 Orangewood Ave. as part of an $8.2 million lease. The building has 30,000 square feet of office space and 50,000 square feet of production space.

“At our Long Beach facility, we just kept growing and growing and kept sucking in buildings around us,” Fimiano said. “We literally had three or four different buildings there,more or less a campus. When we went to Garden Grove, we were able to put engineering, sales and fabrication under one roof.”

Southland counts 200 workers in Garden Grove and about 40 in Irvine. In all, Southland counts nearly 2,000 workers across the country.

“We’re continuing to hire at Garden Grove,” Fimiano said. “We’re planning on growing staff and revenue 15% a year.”

Southland expects $270 million in sales this year, up from $230 million last year, according to Fimiano. Company officials expect about $300 million in revenue next year, he said.

Rivals include Glendale-based ACCO Engineered Systems and American Plumbing & Mechanical Inc. of Round Rock, Texas.

Peter Castleton of Voit Commercial Brokerage LP represented Southland Industries in the 15-year Garden Grove lease. Bob Goodman and Scott Smith of CB Richard Ellis Group Inc. represented landlord REIT Kilroy Realty of El Segundo.

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