With a career spanning almost 20 years with PCL Construction, Chad Keuler – operations lead for PCL’s Special Projects teams across North America – has derived purpose from observing the big benefits that small projects can deliver to local communities. For Keuler, projects that deliver big value to clients is the essence of PCL’s small contractor services offering known as Special Projects. 

“People are familiar with the ‘big’ PCL and our reputation for successfully delivering large-scale complex projects. What people may not know is that we are equally adept at delivering complexity on a smaller scale, and that’s Special Projects,” says Keuler. When clients come to PCL with a tight budget between $10,000 and $15 million and a project that needs to be delivered in a matter of months – if not weeks – then Special Projects, or SP, will answer the call. “SP has been a core part of our business from the beginning” he says. “Clients like to know that – backed by the strength of our balance sheet – PCL can right-size our resources to deliver their smaller retrofits, renovations or expansions.”  

To keep the projects lean and nimble, Keuler trains every Special Projects manager on how to mobilize quickly to deliver complex scopes in operational environments without service disruptions. In this role of manager and mentor, Keuler works with PCL’s SP teams across Canada and the United States to ensure they are leveraging the best tools, right technologies and PCL’s broad network of trades to drive competitive value to clients. 

“My background as an architectural technologist, and then working as a Special Projects manager for many years, has helped me understand how building strong relationships is key to delivering on a client’s vision. Also, having that cradle to grave perspective from many, many projects quickly taught me what is buildable and what is not,” Keuler says.

Beyond embracing the challenges of right sizing the best of PCL to deliver smaller projects, Keuler is particularly proud of how PCL’s SP teams are often on the front lines of the work PCL does to give back to communities. “When you are a small and nimble entity operating within a big business, you can do a lot of great things for your community,” he explains. He saw the results first-hand when PCL’s Hawaii District volunteered to reroof houses after the Maui fires in 2023, and in his home district of Winnipeg by sponsoring community initiatives like the Fort White Organization.

Whether helping a community recover from disaster, enhancing vital community spaces or simply hanging the door for a local business, for Keuler, “Building a Better Future Together” means training PCL’s next generation of leaders to appreciate the value of small in parallel with the big – all while making sure the client enjoys the ride along the way.