L.C. Whitford History
During Ford's presidency, LCW erected many important buildings throughout Western New York, including the Allegany County Courthouse. He eventually moved away from residential construction, but continued to build commercial and institutional buildings. Ford died in 1937, and he passed the thriving company on to his son, Langford Rodman "Rod" Whitford.
Under Rod's leadership, LCW continued to expand. Over the next few decades, the firm constructed buildings at the Alfred University Campus, and erected several schools throughout the Southern Tier. In order to supply materials to his company, Rod opened ready-mix concrete plants in Wellsville and Alfred in 1950; these later formed the foundation of The L.C. Whitford Materials Company. Upon Rod's death in 1969, Langford Chandler "Chan" Whitford took over the company.
Chan's tenure as president was a time of great changes for the company. In 1972, the company began to shift its primary focus from buildings to bridges, due in part to the high demand for bridges in the aftermath of 1972's Hurricane Agnes. Bridge construction and repair remains the specialty of LCW today, though the company continues to work on highways and buildings. Major building projects from Chan's era include a 200,000 square-foot manufacturing facility for Bush Industries in Jamestown, a 95,000 square-foot Tracewell Electronics plant in Cuba, and the Wende Correctional Facility in Alden, NY.
In order to make the company more self-sufficient, Chan founded The L.C. Whitford Materials Company in 1987. In addition to the ready-mix concrete plants that his father had built, Chan added facilities for manufacturing pre-stressed concrete and other pre-cast components, as well as for rebar fabrication and asphalt production. These facilities provide materials, not only for L.C. Whitford's projects, but also for other companies throughout New York and Pennsylvania. Since its inception, the company has sold more pre-cast beams to the NYS Department of Transportation than any other manufacturer.
LCW entered the development market in 1994, when the company purchased land in Wellsville alongside the Genesee River. They then built the Riverwalk Plaza, which has since become a successful commercial venture, providing venues for such businesses as K-Mart and Tops Supermarkets in Allegany County.
In 1995, LCW began to expand further south, creating a second division in Atlanta, GA during the 1996 Summer Olympics. This division, which focuses primarily on road and bridge construction, is constantly providing new opportunities for the company.
Chan created The L.C. Whitford Equipment Company in 1997, which sells and rents construction and forestry equipment throughout New York and Pennsylvania. By 2006, the company was covering all of New York State for Morbark Industrial Equipment, in addition to carrying several other lines.
In January 2006, Chan's eldest son, Langford Bradley "Brad" Whitford was made President of the company. Under Brad's leadership, the company's success continues, reaching new customers through the Atlanta Division and expanding into the Pennsylvania market. The company has recently taken on several major projects, constructing a 353-foot bridge in Warren, PA, providing pre-cast components for a 300,000 square-foot pasta-making plant in Avon, NY, and building a parking garage for the Seneca casino in Salamanca, NY. LCW also undertook the leading role in the Scajaquada rejuvenation project, an 18 million dollar DOT contract which involved the repair of seven bridges in downtown Buffalo. LCW was recently recognized as the third largest construction company in Western New York, with the highest number of employees and the lowest percentage of subcontracted work (about 10%). In 2006, the firm was included in Business First's list of the Top Private Companies in Western New York.
The firm's current office is on North Main Street in Wellsville, NY, across the street from the David A. Howe Public Library. This library, built by LCW in 1935, is considered one of the most beautiful and recognizable architectural landmarks in the Southern Tier, a testament to the quality of work that The L.C. Whitford Company strives to achieve in each of its endeavors.