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Integrated Facility Services Receives Three Safety Awards

in Companies/News

Integrated Facility Services (IFS) recently received three safety awards from leading construction industry organizations.

The American Subcontractors Association-Midwest Council presented an “Outstanding Safety Achievement in 2016” award to IFS. The award is given to contractors with a safety record 50 percent below the Department of Labor’s NAICS class code records.

The Associated General Contractors of Missouri (AGCMO) recognized IFS for working injury-free on the HVAC retrofit at the historic Missouri Athletic Club in downtown St. Louis.

The Sheet Metal and Air Conditioning Contractors National Association (SMACNA) St. Louis recognized IFS as one of the region’s contractors with the lowest percentage of lost time incidents vs. man hours worked.

Integrated Facility Services (IFS) is a full-service HVAC, plumbing, piping, fire protection and building automation firm with more than 270 professional and trade employees. Established in 1966, IFS delivers integrated mechanical engineering and construction, installation, service and planned maintenance, and energy conservation solutions to ensure occupant comfort, improve efficiency and reduce operational costs. 

Architects Endorse House Legislation Enhancing and Making Permanent Key Energy Efficiency Tax Incentive

in Associations/News

The American Institute of Architects (AIA) strongly voiced its support of bipartisan legislation that makes permanent a key energy efficiency tax incentive for owners and designers of energy efficient buildings and that expands its benefits to designers of hospitals, schools, tribal community facilities and other non-profits. H.R. 3507 introduced by Rep. Dave Reichert (R-WA) and co-sponsored by Rep. Tom Reed (R-NY), and Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) also modifies Section 179D of the tax code – the Energy-Efficient Commercial Building Deduction – to make small to midsized architect firms organized as subchapter S corporations eligible for the deduction.

The section 179D tax deduction was originally passed by Congress as part of the Energy Policy Act of 2005 and has been extended several times until it last expired at the end of 2016.  A recent economic  study found that  nearly a million jobs over ten years  and billions of dollars in annual GDP are created by this widely used deduction. This is the first time the provision has received bipartisan support for permanence.

“H.R. 3507 is a huge step in making permanent policies that allow America to move to a 21st century economy. Investing in smart, money-saving designs not only means a better bottom line for designers and building owners, but also means lower tax bills for Americans nationwide,” said AIA President Thomas Vonier, FAIA. “It also provides a big opportunity for community infrastructure projects like schools and hospitals to leverage commonsense incentives, like 179D, allowing designers to incorporate leading edge technologies that make buildings more energy efficient.”

According to data released by the U.S. Department of Energy, buildings are responsible for 75 percent of all electricity consumption in the U.S., with about half of that coming from commercial buildings. In an effort to curb this trend and encourage broader energy efficiency, section 179D allows qualifying building owners and businesses to receive an up to $1.80 per square foot tax deduction for their energy-efficient buildings placed into service during all open tax years.

Founded in 1857, the American Institute of Architects consistently works to create more valuable, healthy, secure, and sustainable buildings, neighborhoods, and communities. 

BNIM Celebrates Opening of The Patient-Centered Care Learning Center to Train More Doctors for Missouri

in Associations/News

BNIM announced the opening of The Patient-Centered Care Learning Center (PCCLC), a $42.5 million, six-story, 98,888 square-foot education building at the University of Missouri (MU) School of Medicine in Columbia, Mo. The facility serves the school’s mission to educate students to provide patient-centered care and includes an anatomy lab, an active learning classroom, clinical simulation rooms, problem-based learning classrooms, and student seminar rooms, as well as support spaces, including offices and student lounge areas.

The Patient-Centered Care Learning Center at the University of Missouri School of Medicine by BNIM (

The Patient-Centered Care Learning Center at the University of Missouri School of Medicine by BNIM

The PCCLC, which is focused on addressing a critical shortage of physicians in the state and nation, is a partnership between the MU School of Medicine, CoxHealth, and Mercy Springfield. Through the partnership, the School of Medicine was able to expand its class size from 96 to 128 students.

The School of Medicine’s focus on patient-centered care defined the design, which includes improved daylight quality, access to views of campus, generous amenities for students, and an enhanced focus on collaboration among students, faculty, and staff. The School of Medicine’s programs and tools for measuring effectiveness have drawn attention across medical education. The results encouraged environments that nurture and elevate the successful pedagogy of the school.

“Each space—from the welcoming main floor to the top two floors, notably set aside for important student learning—supports the pegagogy,” said Steve McDowell, President and CEO of BNIM. “The building exudes the importance of the pedagogy for the next generation of Missouri physicians, and the beauty and authenticity of our state, serving as a reminder of the people these future physicians will serve.”

Through an axial relationship with Jesse Hall, the main MU administration building, the PCCLC visually connects the medical center campus with the original quad and main campus through the use of both red brick and white limestone-like precast. The PCCLC connects the future of medical education with the history and locale of Missourithrough native materials and design expressions. The six elevator lobbies feature reclaimed Missouri wood carved with unique river topographies, a visual parallel between rivers and human cardiovascular systems. The building incorporates recycled stone that originated from locations such as Carthage, Mo., and the Kansas City Power and Light Building.

The mission is also realized in the 32 problem-based learning classrooms on levels 5 and 6. Humanity is emphasized with images of Missourians overlaid on the glass entrance to each classroom, each with an individual story. This collaboration with the School of Journalism incorporated works of student photojournalists from the Missouri Photo Workshop.

“The PCCLC is a new front door for medical education and an example of the importance of integrating Missouriheritage into our learning environments,” said Adam Cohen, Associate Principal and Project Manager with BNIM. “By improving technology, increasing lab sizes, and providing additional space for first- and second-year medical students, it will become a recruiting tool for the School of Medicine to support their goal to train more doctors for Missouri.”

Overall, the MU School of Medicine expansion will provide more than 300 additional physicians for Missouri, add more than $390 million annually to the state’s economy, and create 3,500 new jobs.

BNIM delivers beautiful, integrated, living environments that inspire change and enhance the human condition. The architecture and design firm is an innovative leader in designing high performance environments. Through an integrated process of collaborative discovery, BNIM teams create transformative, living designs that help organizations and communities thrive.

Geotechnology’s Growth Earns Ranking on ENR’s 2017 Top Design Firm List

in Companies/News

Engineering News-Record (ENR), the highly regarded construction industry publication, has ranked Geotechnology, Inc., as one of the nation’s 2017 Top 500 Design Firms.

A leading provider of geotechnical and environmental engineering, geophysics, water resource management, materials testing and drilling services, Geotechnology ranked #391 on ENR’s Top 500 Design Firm’s list.

ENR ranked firms by revenue for design services performed in 2016. The list includes firms that categorize themselves as architect, engineer, engineer-contractor, engineer-architect, environmental, geotechnical engineer, landscape architect and planner.

“This is a terrific accomplishment and the result of everyone in the company focusing on client needs and project efficiencies.” said Ed Alizadeh, President and CEO.

In 2016, Geotechnology reported revenues of $32.6 million, with projects from wide-ranging categories, including major projects within the transportation, multi-family/multi-use, industrial and educational industries.

Established more than 32 years ago, Geotechnology, Inc. is a professional corporation offering a comprehensive range of consulting services in applied earth and environmental sciences, including geophysics, water resource management, geotechnical and environmental engineering, materials testing and drilling.

Local Companies Step-Up to Help Rebuild Fairmont City Playground

in Companies/News

A facelift is underway to bring a decades-old playground in Fairmont City back to life as a place where children can happily and safely play. A $100,000 renovation kicked off last month at Kinder Park when Fairview Heights construction-management company IMPACT Strategies and its subcontractors began pouring concrete sidewalks and constructing a new 20’x16’ wooden pavilion.

The companies involved are all donating their time and materials to make the project a success. They include:

  • Architectural Sheet Metal
  • United Ironworkers
  • Lowry Electric
  • American Exterior-Interior Services, Inc.
  • Gillihan Concrete
  • PM Leach Painting
  • Ox2 Engineers
  • Clinton Seamless Guttering
  • Rehkemper & Son
  • Braddock Architectural Services, LLC
  • Hackmann Lumber

“This is one of those projects that will have a significant, positive impact on the lives of residents of this community for years to come,” said Mark Hinrichs. “It’s our pleasure to be involved and to able to lend our support to such a great cause.”

IMPACT’s pre-construction manager Derek Schaefer said his company is responsible for the pavilion and its related components, which include the concrete pad it sits on and the sidewalks leading to it. Construction crews spent the past several weeks framing the pavilion, setting trusses, sheeting the soffits/ceiling, and installing the electric and lights. The structure will be painted and the standing seam metal roof installed in the coming week.

Kinder Park’s renovation became a reality thanks to Illinois Representative Jay Hoffman and Curtis Francois of Gateway Motorsports. Francois began enlisting support from area businesses after learning from Hoffman that the children of Fairmont City didn’t have a safe place to play.

“Jay Hoffman told me the condition of Kinder Park and I asked what we could do to help restore it,” said Francois. “He connected me with Fairmont City Manager Scott Penny.  Together we came up with a plan to renovate the park and I reached out to a few businesses to donate goods and services.  Impact Strategies took the lead on organizing the trades needed to complete the project.  It’s just great to see companies and the City come together for a great cause and we were happy to be a part of making things a little brighter for the neighborhood kids.”

The pavilion is expected to be complete in early August. At that time, city crews will install new basketball hoops, benches/tables and playground equipment.

IMPACT Strategies, Inc. specializes in Retail, Commercial, Medical, Senior Housing and Education construction and offers comprehensive construction services including design-build, general contracting, construction management and pre-construction management. 

Home Builders Association Donates $15,000 to Habitat for Humanity Saint Louis

in Associations/News

On behalf of the Home Builders Charitable Foundation (HBCF), 2017 HBA President Ken Kruse of Payne Family Homes presented a $15,000 donation toHarper Zielonko, resource development operations manager for Habitat for Humanity Saint Louis (HFHSL).

The donation will be used to support Habitat for Humanity Saint Louis’ 2017 build program. The funding will play an integral role in helping HFHSL reach its goal of building five new homes in Hazelwood, 10 new homes throughout the southeastern quadrant of St. Louis City and 3-6 planned new homes in the Tiffany neighborhood in south St. Louis City.

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.

Project Estimating Just Got Even More Seamless

in Companies/News

As pioneers of the Design-Build construction method, efficiency has been at the heart of what we do for decades. Thanks to our implementation of an innovative estimation program, we’re making preconstruction more efficient and more collaborative.

The program is called DESTINI Estimator from Beck Technology. Developed with crowd-sourced input from experienced estimators, the platform includes the following features:

  • Full-featured, yet easy-to-use estimating functionality.
  • Integrated 2D and 3D takeoff.
  • Highly customizable dashboard-based reporting.
  • Estimate comparison views and Microsoft Excel imports.

“One of our business requirements was to gain a support system that would listen, change, and grow with us, providing the product that will make us the most efficient we can be as technologies and systems change,” Jason Mantle, Chief Operating Officer of The Korte Company, said. “As a truly integrated Design-Build firm, we also need to take advantage of the 3D modeling that our design department gives us. With DESTINI Estimator, I think we will see increased utilization of the information that we have today in our design department, as well as a more efficient takeoff and estimate setup method.”

Beck Technology is no stranger to us. We’ve been using their companion software for 5D modeling and estimating, DESTINI Profiler, since 2015. Using DESTINI Profiler to conceptualize and estimate projects in the early preconstruction phase, we’re positioned for improved communication with owners that helps us win more work.

“With both DESTINI Profiler and DESTINI Estimator on board, Korte can now significantly reduce the number of steps and time taken to align a project vision with the project cost,” said Stewart Carroll, Beck Technology’s Chief Operating Officer. “The world is moving to more lean methods, and Korte’s use of the DESTINI suite supports both the target value design approach and more traditional preconstruction methods in a single platform. Because DESTINI products are designed to work seamlessly together, Korte will have a much more integrated design and bid process. That’s a win for their preconstruction team, as well as Korte’s clients, who will get more value out of the preconstruction process at every stage.”

The innovation behind Beck Technology stems from DESTINI: design estimation integration initiative. DESTINI Profiler and DESTINI Estimator share a common cost database schema, allowing companies to manage a single database platform for both conceptual and detailed estimating. DESTINI Profiler outputs can be opened in DESTINI Estimator and form the basis of the downstream estimating process. Alternatively, DESTINI Estimator can be used from the beginning of the project through project completion.

When we began the process of replacing our previous estimating software, DESTINI Estimator was one of several products we had our eye on. We sent team members to Beck Technology’s Dallas office for a hands-on, intensive exploration, which included a demonstration of Estimator along with hands-on training.

“The success that Korte has had with Profiler provided a high level of trust with their executive team, and they agreed to move forward into the implementation planning phase,” says Tyler Barron, Account Executive with Beck Technology. “(We) introduced an innovative, collaborative approach to implementation planning to help Korte ensure a seamless rollout and take full advantage of Estimator’s extensive capabilities. We were also happy to coordinate client-specific terms in the agreement to better meet Korte’s needs.”

By implementing cutting edge collaborative estimation software that fits our needs, we’re more poised than ever to deliver the Design-Build solution that best fits the needs of our customers.

There’s no substitute for combining the right people, the right materials and lots of hard work to build something special. That will always be true in this industry. But the opportunity to build better relationships before ground is ever broken is something we can’t pass up.

About the author

As Director of Virtual Construction, Craig Mulliniks is responsible for working with owners and our Healthcare Team to understand project solutions through virtual construction.  He will work to develop the project from initial planning and conceptual design to contract execution. He has more than 20 years’ experience in the construction industry. Mr. Mulliniks specializes in acute healthcare construction and conceptual estimating. He is highly experienced in advanced technology software including Macro BIM/DProfiler Modeling

Home Builders Association Donates $12,500 to Habitat for Humanity of St. Charles County

in Associations/News

On behalf of the Home Builders Charitable Foundation (HBCF), 2017 HBA President Ken Kruse of Payne Family Homes presented a $12,500 donation to Lauren Grotegeers, resource development coordinator for Habitat for Humanity of St. Charles County.

The donation will be used to help fund the first attached home built by Habitat St. Charles. One home will be built for a family with young children, including one with special needs. The other is for a single mother and young daughter. Habitat for Humanity of St. Charles County strives to fulfill the mission of providing decent, safe, affordable and sustainable housing to deserving families in St. Charles County.

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.

TDK Adds Software Professionals; Continues Growth Pattern

in Companies/News

IT Consulting Firm Hiring 70 Java Developers, Other Technology Positions for New Clients & Projects

TDK Technologies, LLC (TDK) has added several new software development positions in the first half of 2017 and anticipates the trend to accelerate for the remainder of the year as the St. Louis-based Information Technology (IT) consulting and software solutions firm takes on additional clients and projects.

Since the beginning of the year, TDK has added 30 software developers, project managers and analysts. The company projects it will add an additional 40 in similar roles to meet project growth requirements. Currently TDK has 110 full-time employees, and is one of the area’s largest IT Consulting firms as ranked by the St. Louis Business Journal.

The company has ramped up hiring of Java Developers due to growth in the number of clients and projects that require the most popular programming language around the world. Java is an important programming language in application development and in a wide variety of business software solutions.

“We are looking to hire the best and brightest Java programmers and engineers available, both as employees and as subcontractors,” said TDK Principal David Kocs. “TDK has projects on the immediate horizon that talented Java experts will find challenging and rewarding.”

The demand for Java developers is a trend that has been present in the IT industry for several years. A May 2017 article in the World Economic Forum noted Java is among the programming languages “…to learn if you always want to have a job…”. Java Developer responsibilities at TDK include design and development of Java-based applications based on business requirements, creating new code as well as making enhancements to existing code while providing functional programming deliverables within strict deadlines.

The company will also continue to add project managers, scrum masters, business analysts and quality assurance specialists.

For more information, contact TDK Principal David Kocs at or 636.778.1404 extension 112.

About TDK Technologies

TDK Technologies, LLC is a Woman-owned Business Enterprise (WBE), established in 2001, with more than 100 team members located in the St. Louis metropolitan area.  TDK Technologies provides information technology based e-Commerce and business process and system solutions for businesses through either staff augmentation or outsourced solution delivery.  For more information about TDK Technologies – visit They can be reached at (636) 778-1404 or

Architecture Firms End Second Quarter On A Strong Note

in Associations/Homepage Primary/News

Firm billings beginning to catch up with project inquiries and design contracts 

For the fifth consecutive month, architecture firms recorded increasing demand for design services as reflected in the June Architecture Billings Index (ABI). As a leading economic indicator of construction activity, the ABI reflects the approximate nine to twelve month lead time between architecture billings and construction spending. The American Institute of Architects (AIA) reported the June ABI score was 54.2, up from a score of 53.0 in the previous month. This score reflects an increase in design services (any score above 50 indicates an increase in billings). The new projects inquiry index was 58.6, down from a reading of 62.4 the previous month, while the new design contracts index decreased from 54.8 to 53.7.

View this press release here:

“So far this year, new activity coming into architecture firms has generally exceeded their ability to complete ongoing projects,” said AIA Chief Economist, Kermit Baker, Hon. AIA, PhD. “Now, firms seem to be ramping up enough to manage these growing workloads.”

Key June ABI highlights:

  • Regional averages: South (54.8), West (53.1), Midwest (51.9), Northeast (51.5)
  • Sector index breakdown: multi-family residential (57.1), mixed practice (53.8), institutional (52.6), commercial / industrial (52.1)
  • Project inquiries index: 58.6
  • Design contracts index: 53.7

The regional and sector categories are calculated as a 3-month moving average, whereas the national index, design contracts and inquiries are monthly numbers.

About the AIA Architecture Billings Index
The Architecture Billings Index (ABI), produced by the AIA Economics & Market Research Group, is a leading economic indicator that provides an approximately nine to twelve month glimpse into the future of nonresidential construction spending activity.

About The American Institute of Architects
Founded in 1857, the American Institute of Architects consistently works to create more valuable, healthy, secure, and sustainable buildings, neighborhoods, and communities.


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