Tyler Ogden of Intermountain Construction is the third generation to run this well-established general contracting company. Western Home Journal speaks to Tyler about his company’s history, his commitment to quality, and the traditions started by his grandfather over 30 years ago.
Picture this: 15-year old twin brothers digging trenches in front of Sun Valley Lodge as their father’s construction company lays the pavers for the porte-cochere. 10-hour days doing hard manual labor is one way to learn the ways of the family business. And for Tyler Ogden of Intermountain Construction, it was the perfect way. “There’s no better introduction to a life in construction than digging trenches.”
That industrious summer was the first of Tyler’s many projects in the Sun Valley area. Founded in 1975 by his grandfather Myrt Ogden and run by his father Jeff until 2010, Intermountain Construction has certainly made a mark on the Sun Valley landscape. In addition to many high-end custom homes in the Wood River Valley, Intermountain built Warm Springs Lodge (completed in 1992), Seattle Ridge Lodge (completed in 1994), River Run Lodge (completed in 1996), and Carol’s Dollar Lodge (completed in 2006).
So, it’s safe to say if you’re a skier in Sun Valley, you are familiar with the quality and scope of Intermountain’s work.
Tyler Ogden took over the family business in 2010 after his father’s untimely death. When asked about working for his father, Tyler says, “It was either cheap labor or tough love! We worked hard for our dad when we were young, and I always thought I’d go into the family business. But my dad also encouraged us to go out and pave our own paths.” For Tyler that was a restoration business based in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, and for his brother, a hardscape company also in Jackson. Why restoration? “The need for maintenance never goes away. That’s a solid business plan.”
Intermountain, under the direction of Tyler’s father, built the Sun Valley Club, the hub for golfers in the summer and Nordic skiers in the winter and the Sun Valley Pavilion, home to the Sun Valley Summer Symphony, a project Intermountain Construction completed in near-record time, 11 months. That time frame itself is impressive, but add to the mix the fact that those two big-scale projects were undertaken simultaneously and you’ve got downright unbelievable. “The Pavilion project brought with it some interesting challenges,” says Tyler. “To date, the Pavilion boasts the single-largest concrete pour on record in the state of Idaho.” In addition, “The timeline was a major challenge—but we like a challenge. Before the architects finished drawing up the final plans, we knew we had to get started—so we dug a hole. A big hole for the footings. When the plans were finalized, the architects said, ‘Dig deeper.’”
The Pavilion has quickly become a beloved Sun Valley landmark—a theme that resonates in Intermountain Construction’s commercial work. One of the company’s early award-winning commercial projects was Old Faithful Lodge in Yellowstone and more recent projects include the Visitors Center at the entrance to Grand Teton National Park. You get the sense that this rise-to-the-occasion type of construction is in the D.N.A. of Intermountain Construction and Tyler Ogden. “My grandfather was the Idaho president of the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC) and the recipient of the SIR Award (the construction industry’s highest honor and most prestigious recognition). He was a great leader and set a high standard as he led by example. My father built on that legacy and pushed Intermountain to become a specialized contractor. He excelled at knowing how to schedule and really push a project. This opened the doors for us to build lodges on and around the mountains within the short building seasons of Idaho and Utah.”
This discipline and the commitment to clear and effective communication—“the key to staying on budget and on time in construction,” according to Tyler—has certainly imprinted on this next generation of Odgen leadership at Intermountain. “It’s the key,” says Tyler, “to successful residential projects as well.” Some of Tyler’s most recent work in Sun Valley includes Phase One of the stunning White Cloud homes in Sun Valley, a stone’s throw from the Sun Valley Club. “These homes are truly unique. And I always keep in mind what my father used to say, ‘Time is money.’ We owe it to the clients to stay on schedule and provide the most bang for their buck.” That said, Tyler is also committed to ensuring that everyone involved in the project has fun. “How can what we do NOT be fun? We’re in the business of building people’s dreams and when I do that final walk-through with a client and see the satisfaction on their faces, that’s my definition of fun.”
For more information call Intermountain Construction, Inc. at 208.726.8617 or visit www.interconst.com