Last updated on May 21st, 2024 at 07:53 am

Known as the City of Oaks for the large number of Oak trees in its vicinity, Raleigh is the capital of the state of North Carolina and the seat of Wake County.

The city houses some of the state’s most recognizable structures and its most important institutions, including North Carolina State University, and forms a key part of the Research Triangle. The city is also home to some of the best malls and retailers: this list is a compilation of five of the best general contractors behind these wonderful spaces. Our editorial team carefully chose these contractors based on their best projects, their history, their background, their experience, and the quality of their clientele list.

Ashland Construction 

4601 Atlantic Ave., Raleigh, NC 27604

Established in 1974, Ashland Construction is a leading commercial general contractor that provides a full and comprehensive range of services. The firm takes charge of both preconstruction and construction and assists throughout the entirety of the process from site suitability analysis and building design studies to site development and building construction. Ashland takes a design-build approach, which enables it to keep the entire project in-house, becoming a client’s single point of contact. The firm’s processes become smoother, particularly its communications, as compared to other firms that employ more of the design-bid-build approach. Ashland is also capable of assuming tasks typically assigned to the owner. That includes converting lease requirements to construction-ready plans and obtaining approval for the plans and specifications.

The firm is licensed to operate in ten states in addition to North Carolina: Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, South Carolina, Georgia, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Tennessee, New Jersey, and Alabama. Ashland is also experienced in terms of green building and has worked on numerous LEED-certified construction projects. The firm employs several LEED Accredited Professionals on its team.

August Construction Solutions

707 NW St. Suite #101, Raleigh, NC 27603

August Construction Solutions is a trailblazer in the national retail construction scene and offers a full range of general contracting services. The firm has been in business since 2013 and is led by Michael Iovino from its headquarters in Raleigh. Mr. Iovino comes from a family of tradesmen, contractors, and architects and heavily draws inspiration from his years of experience. Mr. Iovino and his team have worked with numerous household brands, including Lacoste, Adidas, Urban Outfitters, and Carolina Herrera. Its portfolio is a curated gallery of vast spaces and houses numerous high-end projects for internationally known names, including Armani. 

The firm’s best work might be this piece, completed for Warby Parker, pictured above. Finished in 2017, the project spans 3,216-square-feet and was completed in collaboration with The Lawrence Group. It features unique, large balls of light coupled with patterned and polished tile flooring. Its walls were designed to house rows and rows of the brand’s merchandise and includes wooden accents to complement the space’s centerpiece. 

Bobbitt Design Build

600 Germantown Rd., Raleigh, NC 27607

Operating out of its offices in Raleigh, North Carolina, and Columbia, South Carolina, Bobbitt has been in business since 1946 and extends its services throughout the Southeast. The firm is capable of taking on projects regardless of scale and, as of this writing, has worked on over 4,000 commercial endeavors in both North and South Carolina. The firm celebrated 70 years in service back in 2016 and continues to be an industry leader that employs only the best and latest construction technologies. Bobbitt also takes pride in continually being one of the country’s premier Butler Builders, which is a partnership with Butler Manufacturing that has been cultivated for seven decades. Butler Manufacturing is an industry leader in terms of systems construction—they are experts at crafting high-quality structures at maximum value.

The firm is also experienced and well-versed in the design-build approach, rendering its processes smooth and clear. Its work is best embodied by the project for Ace Hardware pictured above. The brand had approached the firm after it had completed a fit-up for a client located in the same shopping center. Located at 2976 Kildaire Farm Road, this store is one of more than 5,000 Ace stores locally owned and operated globally.  It spans over 25,000-square-feet and uses an open floor plan that showcases its hardware products. 

Harrod & Assoc. Constructors

6612 Fleetwood Dr., Raleigh, NC 27612

Headquartered in Raleigh, Harrod & Associates is a respected construction firm best known for its excellent use of the design-build approach.  It specializes in a variety of market sectors, including retail spaces, car dealerships, offices, schools, government buildings, and medical facilities. The firm tailors its approach to each of the projects it takes on and it is capable of taking on every project type: site development, new construction, or renovation project. Its staff is comprised of a group of experienced and talented construction managers, planners, and construction supervisors who collaborate with one another and utilize only the latest materials and techniques. It has also taken on LEED work and is more than experienced in the sustainability movement. 

The firm’s projects can be seen throughout Raleigh, Durham, RTP, Chapel Hill, Butner, Sanford, Wake Forest, Fayetteville, Greenville, and Cary. Harrod and Associates also provides excellent cost analyses and value engineering services, all of which helps to reduce cost, improve construction efficiency, and increase return on investment.