With dedicated business and hands-on backgrounds in site preparation and road grading work, Harry MacLauchlan and Robert Dawson formed a business partnership in 1969. Their first major project - to provide boats and supplies to surveyors marking a proposed link between Prince Edward Island and New Brunswick.
After completing the contract, MacLauchlan and Dawson turned their focus back to grading and preparation projects, though their skills as a business had been expanded by the experience. This was a theme that would recur time and again for the young company.
As the scope of experience grew, so too did the size of the company. In 1973, Blair MacLauchlan, Harry's nephew, was welcomed to the company as Project Engineer. Two years later, Blair purchased Robert Dawson's share of the company, and with his uncle, incorporated Island Coastal Services Ltd. Today, Blair remains President of the company.
Since its beginning, Island Coastal Services Ltd. has been behind the site preparation of countless schools, provincial office buildings, and hospitals on Prince Edwards Island, truly laying the groundwork for Island communities. Awarded the contract for the operation and maintenance of Parks Canada's Green Gables Golf Course, Island Coastal Services Ltd. again expanded its expertise. This was followed by the construction and development by the company of PEI's Links at Crowbush Cove, voted "Best New Golf Course in Canada" by Golf Digest Magazine in 1994.
Though co-founder Harry MacLauchlan passed away on March 27, 2002, he has left Island Coastal Services Ltd. a legacy of superb business practices, provincial improvements, and an appreciation and respect for clients, Islanders, and the people who turn those business practices into reality. As former Lieutenant-Governor of PEI Marion Reid said of MacLauchlan, "He was a very successful man and a very generous one. He worked extremely hard at everything he did and gave his all to his community." It's this dedication to community, employees, and clients that is the cornerstone of Island Coastal Services Ltd.
From a startup business with only a few employees and scant equipment, to a major company with 300 employees in peak season and hundreds of pieces of equipment, Island Coastal Services Ltd. continues to develop Prince Edward Island. Blair MacLauchlan, in an interview with industry publication Heavy Construction News said, "I think that a big part of the success of Island Coastal can be found in its people. We try not only to meet the customer's specifications, but we will suggest improvements and try to do the job even better if we can. Everyone here is 'hands on' when it comes to a customer's project.”
- Department of Transportation, Infrastructure and Energy Contractor's Excellence Award (2022)
- Department of Transportation, Infrastructure and Energy Contractor's Excellence Award (2019)
- Department of Transportation, Infrastructure and Energy Contractor's Excellence Award (2018)
- PEI Road Builders & Heavy Construction Association Safety Award in the Large Company Category (2018)
- Department of Transportation, Infrastructure and Energy Contractor's Excellence Award (2017)
- Department of Transportation Environmental Achievement Award (2015)
- PEI Road Builders & Heavy Construction Association Safety Award in the Large Company Category (2015)
- Department of Transportation Grading Award (2010)
- 2009 Canada Games, Malpeque Level Sponsor
- Prince County Hospital Foundation, Presidents Society, Platinum Level Donor for 2008
- Ducks Unlimited Sponsorship Award
Island Coastal Services is established
Harry MacLauchlan and Robert Dawson form a business partnership aimed at helping boats survey and map out the proposed link between Prince Edward Island and New Brunswick
Harry trades the boats for backhoes
With the surveying around the bridge being completed Harry traded in his boats for a set of backhoes and went to work
Blair joins ICS as a project engineer
After working with CN rail as a civil engineer, Blair joined ICS as a Projects Engineer. In 1975 Blair would purchase Robert Dawson's portion of the company.
ICS sets up their shop and home base in New Haven, PE
After having their original shop in Crapaud, Harry and Blair bought the land the current ICS shop sits on today
First major pipe and earth moving projects
ICS starts some of their first major projects - pipelines through the current Belvedere Golf Course, and their first subdivision - MacLean Avenue off Brackley Point Road
ICS purchases various earth moving companies around PEI
Starting in 1977 with the purchase of Montgomery Construction in Kensington PEI - Harry and Blair purchased various companies to grow their employee and client base (these companies included Toombs and Cobb, Provincial Construction and Commercial Construction - among others)
Purchased first new pieces of equipment - two CAT 225 Excavators and began operating Green Gables Golf Course (1981)
Began Managing "Twin Rivers" Golf Course in Newfoundland
From 1985 until 1990 ICS operated Twin Rivers Golf Course in Port Blanford, NFLD
PEI Man Always On The Go Article Published in Heavy Construction Magazine
ICS builds "The Links at Crowbush Cove" Golf Course
ICS was the low bidder on the project to build "The Links at Crowbush Cove" Golf Course at roughy $3.7 Million Dollars. Through this experience the operators and company in general gained a lot of valuable experience. Blair is quoted in a construction magazine article from the mid 90's saying "It was very different, but enjoyable working on the project, usually we are working to exact specifications and alignments. For the golf course we had to learn to think in an artistic way. It was important to pay attention to the way the contours of the course were formed and to work closely with the desires of the architect. Sometimes that meant changing a feature because it was not keeping with the overall flavour of the course - we were forming a landscape that had to convey a message or a meaning to those who were using it." Crowbush was ranked the best new golf course in Canada in 1994.
Island Coastal wins bid to construct PEI approach to Confederation Bridge
Island Coastal is very proud to have taken part in the biggest project in Island history.
"Lean Company is getting fatter" article published in popular construction magazine