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Special Inspections & Design (SID) is Growing

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The professional engineering firm with diverse expertise in structural, civil, industrial, and welding technologies has been expanding their professional staff, offices, and testing laboratory.

In 2017, SID proudly welcomed Ashlee Peno, PE, SE, as Chief Structural Engineer and opened a new Illinois location.  Ashlee came to SID with 13 years of experience in structural design, detailing, inspection, and rehabilitation.  She has a Bachelor of Science and Master of Science in Civil Engineering from Southern Illinois University Edwardsville.  Ashlee is registered as a Professional Engineer in the State of Missouri and as a Structural Engineer in the State of Illinois.  She is active in the Associated General Contractors (AGC) of Missouri and is currently the Chair of the Supplier/Service Provider Council.  Ashlee heads up the new Illinois design office located on the first floor of the AAIC Inc. corporate headquarters at One Design Mesa in Collinsville.  Originally designed and built in 1963 by Charles C. Morris and located on a prominent mesa visible from Highway 55/70, the structure is known for its unique design featuring a patina green standing seam metal roof with long overhangs and large expanses of glass.

With the start of 2018, SID is excited to welcome two new employees and see the expansion of their Chesterfield location.

Matt Peters joins SID as Senior Project Manager.  Matt holds API 510 Pressure Vessel and API 653 Storage Tank Authorized Inspector certifications.  Matt is also a registered Professional Engineer in the State of Missouri.  He received a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from the Missouri University of Science and Technology in Rolla, MO and has 9 years of experience in conducting & managing Mechanical Integrity projects.  Matt will be based out of the newly expanded Chesterfield office and testing laboratory.  Our new facility doubles our office space and our expanded 1300 ft2 testing laboratory is equipped with nondestructive testing (NDT), corrosion evaluation, and load testing capabilities.

Alicia Streetar has also joined the SID team as a Structural Engineer Intern.  Alicia is currently a student at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville.  She is a member of the student chapters of the Chi Epsilon Civil Engineering Honor Society and the American Society of Civil Engineers.  She is captain of SIUe’s Concrete Canoe Team and plans to receive her Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering in May 2018.

The new year also means a new website for SID.  The updated site reflects the company’s history while highlighting the recent growth.  Visit the new website at to learn more about SID’s specialized services include IBC Special Inspections, certified welding inspections, structural and civil engineering, nondestructive testing, load testing, existing condition surveys, process safety management testing and training, and fall protection design and certification.

KWK Architects Principal Paul Wuennenberg Selected as 2018 Senior Housing Officer Institute

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Paul Weunnenberg

KWK Architects Principal Paul Wuennenberg, AIA, LEED AP, along with Mike Schultz, Director of University Housing at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, were selected to serve as faculty for the 2018 Senior Housing Officer Institute on Jan. 29 – Feb. 1 by the Association of College and University Housing Officers – International (ACUHO-I).

The Senior Housing Officer (SHO) Institute is one of the most prestigious experiences offered by ACUHO-I. Senior housing officers actively engage in learning experiences to improve their skills and knowledge so that they may have a lasting impact on their campus communities. The four-day program, which was held in Pittsburgh, PA, included sessions on the ACUHO-I Core Competencies and Knowledge Domains.

Institute faculty included senior housing, facilities and student affairs professionals, as well as select industry partners who were competitively selected for their passion and expertise in identified SHO-focus topics. Institute faculty facilitated individual sessions in an executive-learning format, using a variety of active learning strategies, including presentations, case studies, group work, discussions, debates, etc. to assist participants in mastering the curriculum. Additionally, faculty facilitated small groups in application reflection and assisted partners in individual reflection on their experiences during the Institute.

Topics discussed included:

  • Legacy and Leadership
  • Career Development
  • Human Resources
  • Occupancy Management
  • Fiscal Resources and Control
  • Information Technology
  • Facilities Management
  • Ancillary Partnerships
  • Evaluation and Planning: Assessment/Programming
  • Resident Educational Services
  • Student Behavior and Crisis Management

Wuennenberg has more than 20 years of experience in the planning and design of student housing. His passion for the research and development of new concepts has led him to be recognized as a national expert in student housing and student dining facilities. His personal portfolio includes 12 residence halls at Washington University in St. Louis, six residence halls at the University of Missouri, and more than a dozen residential buildings at Kansas State University.

For more information about the Senior Housing Officer Institute, visit

Founded in 2013 by five architects with a combined 150 years of higher education knowledge and experience, KWK Architects partners with colleges and universities across the United States to create innovative and inspiring places that enhance campus life. For more information about KWK Architects, visit or contact Director of Marketing Cindy Hausler at or 314-583-1757.

Electrical Connection Named Arcus Award Finalist by the St. Louis Regional Chamber

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For the second year in a row, the Electrical Connection is being saluted as an Arcus Award finalist by the St. Louis Regional Chamber. The electrical industry labor-management partnership is a finalist for the Ameren Corporate Citizenship Award.  The Electrical Connection is a partnership of International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 1 and the St. Louis Chapter, National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA).  Winners of the Arcus Awards will be announced at a March 1, 2018 gala event at the Marriott St. Louis Grand Hotel.

The Electrical Connection is being saluted for a number of initiatives to improve the communities that its contractors and electricians serve.  In fall 2017, the Electrical Connection committed to investing $500,000 in a STEM education partnership with the Saint Louis Science Center to advance science, technology, engineering and math education in schools.  The Electrical Connection had previously sponsored the high-tech lighting of the James S. McDonnell Planetarium.  It has also been major supporter of FIRST Robotics and the St. Charles Economic Development Center’s salute to STEM achievers and has engaged more than 10,000 students in how STEM subjects connect to electrical careers.

The Electrical Connection’s enduring civic support also includes:

A 14-year commitment to Rebuilding Together St. Louis, donating labor and more than $825,000 in materials to improve more than 485 homes for low-income, disabled and elderly St. Louisans.

Since 2004, donating $1.5 million in services to Habitat for Humanity to safely wire nearly 300 new homes.

Helping National Night Out neighborhood safety by donating more than $450,000 in materials/services to install security lighting in more than 850 homes.

Donating new scoreboards, including installation, for several schools.

Being an important resource on the electrical industry, including energy and technology trends, though board service to the Hawthorne Foundation, Missouri Energy Initiative, Missouri Partnership and others.

An ongoing sponsor of the St. Louis Cardinals, St. Louis Blues & Saint Louis FC.

Reenergizing Ferguson, Mo.’s “Shop with a Cop” program while continuing its 23-year support of the St. Francois County “Shop with a Cop” donating more than $59,000.

And for more than 75 years, the IBEW/NECA Electrical Industry Training Center has consistently delivered the best value in workforce development.  Training is free of charge and at no taxpayer expense and structured to meet Missouri’s next generation electrical needs, including electric vehicles, cybersecurity, smart building technology, robotics, advanced manufacturing, digital communications and more.  Diversity is fully integrated into its programs.  More than 25% of apprentices accepted to the program have been minorities.  The partnership also invests in the Regional Union Construction Center’s mission to create a more sustainable minority contracting community.

The Electrical Connection is among five organizations named finalists for the Ameren Corporate Citizenship Award.  Others include Bunzl Distribution, Maritz, Millapore Sigma and Redberri Corporation & Redberri Earth Foundation.  The Arcus Awards honors companies, organizations, or institutions who make St. Louis a more inclusive and attractive place to live, work, and invest for all people. The St. Louis Regional Chamber will salute 51 companies across 10 categories that align with the Chamber’s purpose to inspire a greater St. Louis. Learn more at

Members of the Electrical Connection provide safe and reliable electrical construction, maintenance, repair and replacement services across Missouri, the nation and the world.  For more information visit

Journalists Gain Inside Look at Arch Museum, Visitor Center Construction

in Homepage Primary/News

By Kerry Smith, Editor – St. Louis Construction News & Review

The National Park Service and project partners offered St. Louis journalists a rare peek Feb. 1 at construction progress on the new Gateway Arch Museum of Westward Expansion and Visitor Center.

In partnership with the Gateway Arch Park Foundation, Bi-State Development Agency, Jefferson National Parks Association and Great Rivers Greenway, the NPS led a special hard-hat tour Thursday afternoon of the nearly 150,000-square-foot, $176 million facility. The museum and visitor center is on schedule for a July 3 public reopening when Fair Saint Louis returns to the Arch grounds. It is a major component of the overall $380 million CityArchRiver project.

“It’s all about movement,” said Bill Haley, founder of Haley Sharpe Design, the project’s global design consultant that is known for project exhibits at famous venues such as the Smithsonian Institution’s National Air and Space Museum and Stonehenge. “The new museum and visitor center here is an open, flexible, interactive design that will engage visitors and lead them through history in a personal, meaningful and inspirational way. Forty percent of it is interactive, inviting the visitor to be an active participant in the story.” In addition to Haley’s firm which lead design of the exhibits, Cooper Robertson, James Carpenter Design Associates and Trivers Associates designed the visitor center expansion. Pacific Studios and Kozeny Wagner built the museum exhibits, with McCarthy Building Companies working as lead contractor on the visitor center expansion.

Moving through the layout will take visitors through six distinct periods in Westward Expansion history. The exhibit areas are named Jefferson’s Vision, Colonial St. Louis, Riverfront Era, Manifest Destiny, Building the Arch and New Frontiers. Each is positioned as part of a hub-and-spoke pattern that is representative of the historical movement west.

A 15×15-foot vertical log house is nearly completed, offering visitors an up-close glimpse at how a French colonial home in St. Louis appeared in the 1700s. A five-block scale model populated period structures and more than 500 hand-painted figures depicts what St. Louis’ rebuilt downtown riverfront looked like in 1852, just three years following the city’s devastating fire.

On the mezzanine level, contractors are busily perfecting what Haley says is the largest terrazzo floor map ever designed and built in the U.S. Visitors will be able to walk across North America identifying trail systems, river networks and more as they trace pioneers’ journeys westward.

Floor-to-ceiling original artwork painted by former St. Louis resident Michael Haynes depicts the signing of the Louisiana Purchase Treaty in 1803 and other landmark historical figures and occasions. Bob Moore, historian with the JNPA, said the new museum and visitor center tells the story of the early pioneers from a clearly St. Louis perspective. “We wanted to be sure that people understood that for 40 years, St. Louis was a French-speaking town and enjoyed a symbiotic relationship with the Osage Nation and others,” he said. “Rather than telling St. Louis’ story from a national vantage point, we’re truly telling it with a distinctive St. Louis voice.”

A 100-foot-wide video wall in the tram lobby, produced by Aperture Films, displays a video collage portraying the building of Gateway Arch and other scenes of American innovation. Nearby, a video feed of views from the top of the Arch will enable those with accessibility challenges or other issues to experience the Arch virtually without actually taking the tram ride to the top. Also nearby, visitors will have the opportunity to create their own multi-media photo collage and output it in postcard form to preserve their original memories from the visit.

Signature elements from the old museum that will find their way to prominence in the new one include Gateway Arch architect Eero Saarinen’s winning tabletop model in the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial Competition. The new museum will also feature tabletop models of the competition’s finalist entries.

This is the first major renovation of the Museum and Visitor Center since the facility opened in 1976. Construction on the Arch grounds began in August 2013; work on the museum and visitor center began in April 2015.

Home Builders Association Donates More Than $3,000 to Boys Hope Girls Hope of St. Louis

in Associations/News

On behalf of the Home Builders Association (HBA), 2018 HBA President Dale Black of CMS Homes (left), presented a $3,252 donation to Jan Wacker, development director for Boys Hope Girls Hope of St. Louis, and Rachel Bene, development manager for Boys Hope Girls Hope of St. Louis.

The donation will be used to install a privacy fence the next to the girl’s home to prevent non-residents from cutting through the yard and avert any potential incidents. One of 16 affiliates across the United States and Latin America, Boys Hope Girls Hope St. Louis helps academically motivated middle and high school students rise above disadvantaged backgrounds and become successful in college and beyond. Its goal is to graduate young people who are physically, emotionally and academically prepared for post-secondary education and a productive life, breaking the cycle of poverty.

The HBA is a local trade association of more than 600 member firms representing the residential construction industry. The Home Builders Charitable Foundation, the HBA’s charitable arm, is a non-profit organization dedicated to providing housing assistance to people or organizations with special shelter needs.

Ameren Illinois Unveils Renovated Operating Center in East St. Louis

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Upgraded facility houses 50 workers serving 30,000-plus customers in Metro East

Ameren Illinois unveiled its newly renovated 29,000-square-foot East St. Louis Operating Center on Friday, demonstrating the company’s commitment to strengthening its operations in the Metro East.

Ameren Illinois Chairman and President Richard J. Mark was joined by U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin, East St. Louis Mayor Emeka Jackson-Hicks and state and local leaders Friday in a ribbon-cutting ceremony to officially re-open the upgraded operating center. Sitting on 5.3 acres at 500 E. Broadway in East St. Louis, the facility houses 50 employees and serves as the operational hub for energy delivery services provided to 30,000-plus customers across more than 10 Metro East communities. Workers ranging from linemen and engineers to gas emergency response personnel are based at the facility.

“This reinvestment transformed a 60-year-old building into a state-of-the-art operating center, offering a comfortable and modern work space for employees, and enhanced equipment staging and storage capabilities,” Mark said. “We’ve maintained a strong presence in the East St. Louis community for many years, and we’re excited to continue our efforts to build the next generation energy delivery system for local residential and business customers.”

Ameren Illinois invested $10.6 million in the renovation project, resulting in many new and enhanced features, including:

  • Parking for more than 25 Ameren Illinois service trucks under an upgraded truck shelter.

The on-site fleet includes 13 line, eight substation, four metering and two gas emergency vehicles.

  • An enhanced indoor garage for fleet repairs and tire storage.
  • New conference rooms and meeting space for employees.
  • Energy efficient LED lighting throughout the facility.
  • 57 parking spaces for employees.
  • A new wellness room and new locker rooms.
  • New electrical, mechanical and plumbing systems.
  • Storm water improvements and a more advanced fire protection system.

Construction was performed by IMPACT Strategies and took approximately eight months to complete, creating 50 construction jobs. Nearly 35 percent of the construction work was performed by minority- or female-owned contractors.

“As an East St. Louis native, I’m glad to see Ameren Illinois continue to invest in this community and its workers,” said U.S. Senator Dick Durbin. “The construction jobs created by the renovation and the key upgrades for the 50 current employees at the facility are part of a continued effort to tap into the Metro East workforce and improve the local economy. Congratulations to Ameren Illinois and Mayor Jackson-Hicks on today’s ribbon-cutting.”

“This is an important day for East St. Louis,” said Mayor Jackson-Hicks. “Ameren Illinois is a strong community partner and this beautiful facility truly reaffirms the company’s commitment to our City and its residents.”

The new operating center is only one example of recent Ameren Illinois projects in the East St. Louis area. Since 2015, the company has invested more than $30 million across numerous projects, including: a remediation initiative to remove 22,000 tons of impacted soil from an old manufactured gas plant on Lynch Avenue, construction of the Katherine Dunham Substation to increase reliability for 3,000-plus local customers, upgrades to the Ridge Substation and the Edgemont Substation, as well as two miles of new power lines and 70 new poles to fortify the local grid.

Looking ahead, Ameren Illinois will begin adding smart meters to local homes and businesses in February.

“We’re excited about the recent upgrades in East St. Louis and look forward to partnering with the City well into the future,” Mark added.

The operating center serves customers in the following communities: East St. Louis, Cahokia, Sauget, Washington Park, Alorton, Centerville, Fairmont City, State Park, Mitchell, Fairview Heights and small parts of Belleville and Dutch Hollow.

Ameren Illinois delivers energy to 1.2 million electric and 816,000 natural gas customers throughout central and southern Illinois. Our service territory covers more than 1,200 communities and 43,700 square miles and our mission is to power the quality of life. For more information, visit  Follow us on Twitter @AmerenIllinois and Facebook.

Mason Contractors Association Announce 2018-2019 Board

in Associations/Homepage Primary/News

Election results for the 2018-2019 Board of the Mason Contractors Association of St. Louis were announced in January.

Martin Heck, Jr., President of Martin C. Heck Brick Contracting., was elected President of the Association. Martin C. Heck Brick Contracting was incorporated in 1975 by Martin C. Heck, Sr., the same year Martin C. Heck, Jr., began full time as a mason. Martin Heck, Jr. became part owner in 2000. Martin C. Heck Brick Contracting has worked on projects such as: Missouri Botanical Gardens, St. Louis Zoo and Forest Park.

Other officers elected are Bradley C. Grant (Grant Contracting Company) as Vice President, Brian Smith (John J. Smith Masonry Company) as Secretary, and Brett Lampkin (Lampkin Masonry) as Treasurer.   

Trustees elected are Gary Beirith (Beirith Masonry, L.L.C.), Daniel Dwyer (E.C. Landers Brickwork, Inc.), Nick Frisch (Frisch Masonry, Inc.), Tom Schmitt (Superior Waterproofing & Restoration Co., Inc.), and Luke Siebert (Heitkamp Masonry, Inc.).

Arbitration Board members are Brian J. Grant (Grant Contracting Company, Inc.), Thomas L. McDonnell (George McDonnell & Sons Tuckpointing Company), Jeffrey D. Schmidt (JDS Masonry, Inc.), John J. Smith, Jr. (John J. Smith Masonry Company) and Kenneth Westhoff (Leonard Masonry, Inc.).

The Mason Contractors Association of St. Louis, which was chartered in March 1896, is one of St. Louis’ oldest trade organizations. Its members include owners of contracting companies, along with businesses that supply the masonry industry, as well as the firms that serve its financial, legal and insurance needs.

SITE Improvement Association Awards $15,000 In 2018 College Scholarships To Six Local Students

in Associations/News

The SITE Improvement Association has awarded a total of $15,000 in scholarships to six deserving St. Louis area students seeking to start or further their college education in 2018. High school seniors and college students with a parent employed by one of the 200 SITE member companies are eligible for the $2,500 scholarships, which are based on students’ academic achievements, involvement in the community and financial need. More than $265,000 in scholarships has been awarded to 137 students since the program began 18 years ago, making it one of the longest continuously running scholarship programs in the local construction industry.

“SITE scholarships are made possible through voluntary contributions from SITE member companies and from the SITE Advancement Foundation,” said Terry Briggs, Executive Director of SITE.  “We are gratified by the many stories we hear from past scholarship recipients who have gone on to complete college and launch lucrative careers in construction and related industries.”

This year SITE awarded scholarships to the following students:

  • Dustin Burt, a freshman at Missouri University of Science and Technology from Marthasville, Mo. This marks the second $2500 college scholarship awarded to Dustin by SITE;
  • Amy Heffernan, a sophomore at Maryville University from Barnhart, Mo;
  • Nicholas Horstmann, a freshman at Murray State University from Wildwood, Mo. This is the second $2500 scholarship awarded to Amy by SITE;
  • Elijah Marquart, a senior at St. Francis Borgia Regional High School from Washington, Mo;
  • Zachary Marquart, a sophomore at Missouri University of Science and Technology from Washington, Mo. This is Zachary’s second $2500 college scholarship received from SITE; and
  • Eva Randazzo, a senior at Wright City High School from Innbrook, Mo.

SITE is an independent construction contractor group representing more than 200 contractors and businesses primarily in the concrete, earthmoving, landscaping, asphalt paving, highway/bridge, sewer/utility and specialty construction segments. For more information, visit

Metro East Commercial Furniture & Design Firm Celebrates 22 Years in Business

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Louer Facility Planning, Inc., a commercial furniture dealership and interior design firm, is celebrating 22 years in business. They were founded by local resident, Jane Louer, in 1996 and are located in the Eastport business district in Collinsville.

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville MBA alumnus, Jane Louer, began her own firm because she saw a need in the Metro East marketplace for quality interior design and commercial furniture expertise. Shortly after Louer Facility Planning began, the company became a select dealer for Haworth, a U.S. designer and manufacturer of adaptable workspaces including office furniture, workstations, seating, and movable walls. Louer provides furniture solutions for workspaces both locally and nationally.

“I enjoy reflecting back to when I struck out on my own, and how exciting those times were. I am proud of each and every job we have done over the past 22 years. Many thanks, and ‘hats off,’ to all of the people who helped our company achieve the success we have today,” stated Louer. “I am optimistic about our continued achievements and growth.”

Louer Facility Planning is recognized as one of the Largest Women Owned Businesses (2017) and as one of the Top 10 Largest Office Furniture Companies (2016) by the St. Louis Business Journal. Louer Facility Planning’s clients include those in the corporate, financial, healthcare, government, worship and educational sectors. For more information, go to

Western Specialty Contractors Working with Renowned Team to Restore Iconic Saban Building in Los Angeles, CA

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1930’s-era Streamline Moderne Building is Future Home of the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures

Western Specialty Contractors branches in Los Angeles, CA and Seattle, WA are teaming up on a project to restore the historic Saban Building (formerly May Company department store) in Los Angeles, CA—the future home of the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures. Western crews are working alongside renowned historic preservation consultant John Fidler, New York Pritzker-Prize winning architect Renzo Piano with Renzo Piano Building Workshop and Gensler, general contractor Matt Construction of Los Angeles, CA, and owner’s representative Paratus Group of New York, NY.

“We work with a lot of great consultants, architects and general contractors, but it’s not every day that we get to work with the country’s leading authorities on historic preservation on such a prestigious project,” said Western’s Seattle Branch Manager Dave Kimble. “We are so honored and excited to have been given the opportunity to work with such a talented team of experts.”

Described by the Los Angeles Conservancy as the grandest example of Streamline Moderne architecture in Los Angeles, the historic May Company store, now called the Saban Building after donors Cheryl and Haim Saban, is undergoing an extensive expansion and renovation to accommodate the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’ new museum.

Three glass bridges will connect the existing building to a new eye-catching, 130-foot tall spherical structure made of glass and concrete that will overlook the Hollywood Hills. Scheduled to open in 2019, the 290,000-square-foot, six-story museum will celebrate and explore the history and art of films and filmmaking through exhibition galleries, two state-of-the-art theaters including the 1,000-seat David Geffen Theater, an education studio, a restaurant and cafe, event spaces, and a store.

Western crews are installing new limestone and granite on a portion of the existing building’s facade, making limestone Dutchman repairs, waterproofing and repairing window frames, patching and cleaning stone, installing granite Dutchman repairs and waterproofing portions of the facade.

Constructed in 1939, the Saban Building is located on Wilshire and Fairfax next to the Los Angeles County Museum of Art campus, and is listed as a Los Angeles Historic-Cultural Monument. The iconic building was once the finest department store on the Miracle Mile and is most recognized by its predominant gold-tiled cylinder at the corner of Fairfax Avenue.

For more information about the museum, visit

Family-owned and operated for more than 100 years, Western Specialty Contractors is the nation’s largest specialty contractor in masonry and concrete restoration, waterproofing and specialty roofing. For more information about Western Specialty Contractors, visit

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