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Midas Hospitality to Bring First Element by Westin to St. Louis

in Homepage Primary/News

A new eco-conscious hotel, which will be built at the home of a long-time area non-profit organization, is coming to St. Louis by 2019.

Owner Midas Forest Park, LLC, a subsidiary of Midas Hospitality, recently bought the current home of Habitat for Humanity Saint Louis (HFHSL) located at 3763 Forest Park Ave.  The 1.5 acre property was purchased for $2.4 million to make way for the $25 million Element by Westin.  Midas Hospitality will lease the non-profit organization space for up to one year while it relocates.

The hotel concept encourages renewal through a nature-influenced environment and is constructed with an efficient use of space and sustainability in mind.  The eight-story, 119,000-square-foot hotel will include 153 extended stay rooms and feature 10,000-square-foot retail space plus a rooftop lounge.

The environmentally-responsible rooms will have oversized windows to allow natural light plus fully-equipped kitchens with spa-inspired bathrooms.  The hotel will have an extensive fitness center, an all-natural saline pool, and a borrow-a-bike program for its guests.  Element will be located directly across from the St. Louis Foundry redevelopment.  It will back up to St. Louis University and be only three blocks from the Cortex Innovation District and one block from Ikea.

Midas Hospitality will manage the hotel.  The builder is MC Hotel Construction, a general contractor specializing in new hotel construction and renovations, which is the sister company of Midas Hospitality.  The architecture firm is Gray Design.  All three companies are based in St. Louis, Mo., and this is the first Element hotel built and managed by these businesses.  Carrolton Bank provided the financing for the acquisition.

“The vibrant midtown area is the perfect place for an environmentally-friendly Element by Westin,” said Midas Hospitality CEO David Robert.  “We are excited to work with this growing community by providing extended stay lodging to the university campuses, innovation district, and medical community.”

“We are delighted with the sale and what it will mean to our much needed work in the community.  As good stewards of our organization’s assets, we were pleased to be able to take advantage of the strong commercial real estate market in the area,” said Habitat for Humanity Saint Louis CEO Kimberly McKinney.  “For up to a year, we will be continuing our important work of building safe and affordable housing for hard working families from our current Forest Park Avenue location.  We look forward to sharing more information in the future on our operations for our city Habitat ReStore, our construction warehouse and our administrative offices in a conveniently relocated space.”

Habitat for Humanity Saint Louis (HFHSL) is a not-for-profit, ecumenical housing ministry working in partnership with individuals and communities of all faiths to improve housing conditions and provide safe, decent and affordable housing in St. Louis City and County.  In addition to a down payment and a mortgage, each HFHSL homebuyer invests 350 sweat-equity volunteer hours into building or rehabbing a home and attending life skills classes.  For more information, visit

Founded in 2006, Midas Hospitality has developed, opened and currently manages numerous properties including 30 hotels in 14 states.  The company serves global brands including Hilton, IHG, Marriott, and Starwood.  Midas Hospitality’s headquarters are located at 1804 Borman Circle Dr. in Maryland Heights, Mo.  For more information, call (314) 692-0100 or visit

MC Hotel Construction, which is also located at 1804 Borman Circle Dr., specializes in hotel construction and renovations with projects currently underway in six states.  MC Hotel Construction builds for leading brands such as Hilton, Marriott, IHG, Starwood and Legacy Suites.  For details, call (314) 339-6600 or visit

HBA Announces Sales, Marketing & Construction Award Winners

in Associations/News

The Home Builders Association of St. Louis & Eastern Missouri (HBA) announced the winners of its annual Sales, Marketing & Construction (SMAC) Awards on Wednesday, April 26 at a ceremony at Greenbriar Hills Country Club in Kirkwood, Mo. The SMAC Awards honor excellence in the home building industry and are divided into three categories: Homes of the Year, Marketing & Advertising and Personal Achievement. Please see the next page for a list of winners.

The SMAC Awards were judged by staff and members of the St. Louis Association of REALTORS®. Click here for more information about judging criteria and the full entry packet.

The HBA is a local trade association of more than 600 member firms representing the residential construction industry.

Sales, Marketing & Construction Award Winners

The following HBA members and member companies were awarded for their achievements in 2016:

Homes of the Year Awardees

  • Display Home of the Year, Small Builder, 2,100-2,699 sq. ft. – Bridgewater Communities for the Warson at The Villas at Crimson
  • Display Home of the Year, Small Builder, 3,300-3,999 sq. ft. – McKelvey Homes for The Muirfield at Muirfield Manor
  • Display Home of the Year, Small Builder, 4,000-4,999 sq. ft. – McKelvey Homes for The Bellerive at Enclave Bellerive
  • Display Home of the Year, Large Builder, 1,800-2,099 sq. ft. – Payne Family Homes for The Geneva II at The Villages at Montrachet
  • Display Home of the Year, Large Builder, 2,100-2,699 sq. ft. — Payne Family Homes for The Meridian at The Villages of Provence
  • Display Home of the Year, Large Builder, 3,300-3,999 sq. ft. – PulteGroup for The Deer Valley at Bur Oaks
  • Staging Project of the Year, $200,001-$299,999 – FLAIR Home Stagings & Displays
  • Staging Project of the Year, $300,000-$399,999 – FLAIR Home Stagings & Displays
  • Staging Project of the Year, $400,000-$499,999 – FLAIR Home Stagings & Displays
  • Staging Project of the Year, $500,000-$749,999 – FLAIR Home Stagings & Displays
  • Staging Project of the Year, $750,000-$999,999 – FLAIR Home Stagings & Displays
  • Staging Project of the Year, Above $1 million – FLAIR Home Stagings & Displays
  • Remodeling Project of the Year, Overall Redesign – Liston Construction Company
  • Remodeling Project of the Year, Kitchen – Liston Construction Company
  • Remodeling Project of the Year, Miscellaneous Project – Liston Construction Company
  • Custom Homes of the Year – Hibbs Homes
  • Most Advanced Home of the Year – Hibbs Homes

Marketing & Advertising Awardees

  • Best Brochure Design, Builder – Payne Family Homes
  • Best Brochure Design, Associate – Bennett Premium Building Supplies
  • Best New Floor Plan – PulteGroup for the Meadowview at Chandler Ridge
  • Best Print Ad, Builder – Payne Family Homes 
  • Best Print Ad, Remodeler – Mosby Building Arts
  • Best Social Media, Builder – Payne Family Homes
  • Best Social Media, Associate – Berkshire Hathaway Home Services – Select Properties – The Boehmer Team
  • Best Specialty Niche, Builder – Bridgewater Communities
  • Best Specialty Niche, Remodeler – Mosby Building Arts
  • Best YouTube Commercial, Builder – Payne Family Homes
  • Best Sales Office Design, Builder – PulteGroup
  • Best Website, Associate – Titan Granite

Personal Achievement Awards 

  • New Home Community Salesperson of the Year – Lisa Seely, McBride & Son Homes
  • Rookie Salesperson of the Year – Christopher Todd Oliphant, PulteGroup 
  • Assistant Community Salesperson of the Year – Suzie Spasenoski, McKelvey Homes 
  • New Home Sales Manager of the Year – Cyndie Roche, Payne Family Homes 
  • Marketing Director of the Year – Cyndie Roche, Payne Family Homes
  • Construction Manager of the Year – Jay VanDerBeck, PulteGroup 
  • Real Estate Sales Manager/Agent of the Year – Berkshire Hathaway Home Services – Select Properties – The Boehmer Team 
  • Mortgage Professional of the Year – Trisha McConkey, Associated Bank 
  • Highest Closer, Dollar Volume – Clyde Oliver, McKelvey Homes 
  • Highest Closer, Number of Sold Units – Lisa Seely, McBride & Son Homes

Ameren Releases 2017 Corporate Social Responsibility Report

in Companies/News

Report highlights how company balances responsibilities to customers, communities, shareholders, its workforce and the environment

The 2017 Corporate Social Responsibility Report for Ameren Corporation (NYSE: AEE) is now available at The voluntary report details Ameren’s commitment to energy sustainability and the company’s responsibilities to its many stakeholders.

The report addresses a range of topics, including environmental performance, community betterment and financial strength.

“Operating in a sustainable way requires us to carefully balance multiple priorities,” said Warner L. Baxter, Ameren’s chairman, president and chief executive officer.  “First, we have a responsibility to our customers and the communities we serve – we remain focused on delivering superior customer value, including very good reliability at reasonable prices. We also have a responsibility to shareholders, who are Ameren’s owners, and to our co-workers, with safety being one of our core values. And of course we have a responsibility to be good stewards of the environment and our shared world.”

Report highlights include:

 Cleaner air: Ameren has achieved significant decreases in emissions at its coal-fired energy centers since 2005. Carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions dropped by 26 percent, nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions dropped by 44 percent and sulfur dioxide (SO2) emissions were reduced by 63 percent.

 Economic Impact: Serving as an economic engine in Illinois and Missouri, Ameren made more than $2 billion of capital expenditures in 2016, supported a payroll of $994 million and paid $467 million in state and local taxes.

 Customer Value: Ameren Missouri’s and Ameren Illinois’ electric rates remain below the Midwest and U.S. averages. Even though Ameren’s prices are comparatively low, some customers need extra help, which is why Ameren partners with social agencies to administer bill assistance programs funded by company and customer contributions.

 Reliability: Ameren’s electric distribution reliability performance has improved, as measured by the System Average Interruption Frequency Index (SAIFI). This important industry measure shows how Ameren has reduced the total number of interruptions per customer served per year.

 Charitable giving: Ameren contributed nearly $7.3 million in 2016 to nearly 1,000 nonprofit organizations throughout the two-state region.

 Financial performance: Ameren shareholders have seen a total cumulative shareholder return of 63 percent over the three-year period from Dec. 31, 2013, through Dec. 31, 2016, performance that beat indices such as the S&P 500 Utilities and Philadelphia Utility Index.

In October 2017, Ameren Missouri will release its updated 20-year energy generation plan. Baxter previewed this update in a video message that’s part of the report.

“We remain committed to transitioning to a cleaner, more diverse generation portfolio in a responsible fashion,” Baxter said.

Baxter continued: “Our vision – ‘Leading the Way to a Secure Energy Future’ – describes the future we work to enable: a future with cleaner energy and a stronger, smarter grid capable of delivering the products and services our customers value most, while delivering the long-term economic growth of the communities we serve and delivering superior value to the shareholders to whom we are accountable.”

St. Louis-based Ameren Corporation powers the quality of life for 2.4 million electric customers and more than 900,000 natural gas customers in a 64,000-square-mile area through its Ameren Missouri and Ameren Illinois rate-regulated utility subsidiaries. Ameren Illinois provides electric delivery and transmission service as well as natural gas delivery service. Ameren Missouri provides vertically integrated electric service, with generating capacity of over 10,200 megawatts, and natural gas delivery service. Ameren Transmission Company of Illinois develops regional electric transmission projects. For more information, visit, or follow us at @AmerenCorp, or LinkedIn/company/Ameren.

Download – Ameren’s two-page summary PDF.

MC Industrial Awarded SLCCC Best Practices & Inclusion Award

in Companies/News

MC Industrial, Inc., an independent McCarthy company, was awarded with a 2017 Construction Industry Best Practice Award by the St. Louis Council of Construction Consumers (SLCCC) on March 6th, 2017 for the Boeing St. Louis Composite Center of Excellence project. Also recognized as a finalist, was MC Industrial’s NRG Powerton DSI & ESP Upgrades project.

The SLCCC presents the Best Practices awards annually to recognize successful implementation on construction projects of one or more of 17 Best Practices such as cost, schedule and quality.

The Boeing St. Louis Composite Center of Excellence is a more than ten-acre manufacturing and paint facility that signifies a growing economy in St. Louis, bringing in jobs and growth to the community. MC Industrial was worked hand-in-hand with Boeing to design and construct the center, self-performing many areas such as the pouring of concrete foundations and steel erection. After a redesign of the job and having record amounts of precipitation for consecutive months, MC Industrial continued to push forward with the schedule and successfully complete the project with the original completion date.

MC Industrial’s NRG Powerton DSI & ESP Upgrades project, awarded in June 2015, exhibited the complex challenges of a large-scale coal fleet modernization job with the power plant being NRG’s largest. The scope of work included installation of two new Trona Dry Sorbent Injection units, PDC building foundations, and associated balance of plant equipment and structures. The significant team performance needed to achieve success on a critical compliance-driven power project, was recognized as a 2017 SLCCC Best Practice Award finalist.

“We are honored to be recognized for the hard work and determination set forth throughout both the Boeing Composite Center of Excellence and NRG Powerton projects,” commented Bob Kohlburn, president of MC Industrial. “These SLCCC Best Practices awards are a testament to our firm’s commitment of being a trusted partner and delivering a best-value approach to each of our projects.” 

MC Industrial is a national construction firm, dedicated to the highly-specialized needs of the industrial marketplace.

Route 51 Mississippi River Crossing

in News

To support planning of a potential bridge upgrade, the Missouri Department of Transportation Southeast District selected CH2M to provide an Environmental Assessment (EA) to provide a safe and reliable Route 51 Mississippi River crossing. This selection builds on CH2M’s more than 20-year position as the go-to consultant for National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) work in Missouri.

The Route 51 Bridge, originally constructed in 1942, and re-constructed in 1944 after a severe storm destroyed the main span, is a continuous truss bridge eligible for the National Register of Historic Places and listed as functionally obsolete, or no longer adequate due to outdated design.

CH2M will support the first steps to evaluate options to provide a safe, reliable Mississippi River crossing. The EA will bring together engineering and environmental considerations focusing on general location, mode choice, known environmental and cultural resource constraints, area-wide quality and land use implications. The EA process will determine if there are significant impacts to the proposed options, including replacing the existing bridge.

“While MoDOT begins looking at upgrades to the aging Route 51 Bridge infrastructure, taking traffic, tourism, seismic activity and environmental needs into consideration will be vital,” said CH2M Global Highways and Bridges Practice Director, Bryan Nicol. “The work our team is conducting today will ensure design of a safe crossing and continued economic vitality for communities on both sides of the Mississippi River.”

The bridge, used by more than 6,500 vehicles per day, functions as the sole river crossing for vehicle traffic between Perry County, Missouri and Chester, Illinois. An attraction as much as it is a transportation asset, the bridge serves employees of local businesses, including Gilster-Mary Lee Corporation and the Menard Correctional Center, school buses from the Chester Community School District, farm equipment and visitors to historic Chester – the birthplace of the popular Popeye cartoon.

“We have a long, successful history of working with MoDOT on its most important and challenging projects and look forward to the opportunity to build on this relationship with the Chester Bridge Environmental Assessment,” said Buddy Desai, CH2M vice president and project manager for the EA.

Dynamic Controls Inc., Expands With Two Western U.S. Branch Offices

in Companies/News

Leading systems integrator, Dynamic Controls Inc. (DCI), is pleased to announce the expansion of two new branch offices in Casper, Wyoming and Denver, Colorado.  This brings the total number of DCI branch offices to four (4).  This growth is part of a long-term strategy working with prominent owners, developers, property managers and general contractors who work on National Accounts in the Healthcare, Data Center, Industrial, Institutional, Government, Education, Petro-Chemical, Power & Generation and Entertainment markets.  As a part of this growth, Dynamic Controls, Inc. will further strengthen it’s expanding relationship as a Partner of Schneider Electric, a “Global Specialist in Energy Management and Automation.”

Jeff Gross, CEO of Dynamic Controls, Inc., “This is an exciting time for the company.  The strength of our team and our relationships with both customers and Schneider Electric continues to allow for the growth potential of our great company.  We will continue to focus on core large building automation, power management, small building controls, fire and security/surveillance as a Schneider Electric EcoXpert™ delivery partner.”

The Casper, Wyoming branch opened in early April 2017 and Denver, Colorado is expecting to open in late spring.  Both branches will offer sales, estimating, operations, field installation and building maintenance capabilities.  The Wyoming branch will have the ability to provide SmartStruxure, I/A Series, Vista, INET, I/A JACE and Andover Continuum on the temperature control side of the business.  The Colorado branch will have the ability to provide SmartStruxure, I/A Series and I/A JACE on the temperature control side of the business.  Both branches will have the ability to provide a vast number of security and surveillance solutions.

Jason Schaible, Director-West Region Partners for Schneider Electric Buildings America, Inc. added, “Maintaining customers for life is a core value for Schneider Electric. We are focused on supporting customers throughout the product lifecycle and the lifecycle of your facility.  Schneider Electric is focused on bringing modern offers and solutions that meet the evolving needs of our customers.  We are excited to add Dynamic Controls, Inc., as one of our West Region Partners.”

Founded in the early 1980’s, in Peoria, Illinois, Dynamic Controls Inc., is consistently ranked among the top systems integrators in the United States. In addition to the Peoria, IL headquarters, DCI operations include a branch office in St. Louis, MO, Casper, WY and Denver, CO.

Foreman Fabricators, Inc. of St. Louis Wins International Bronze Award

in Companies/News

Foreman Fabricators, Inc. in St. Louis has won a prestigious award for outstanding craftsmanship in the annual Ernest Wiemann Top Job Competition, sponsored by the National Ornamental & Miscellaneous Metals Association (NOMMA).  Judges honored Foreman with the “Bronze Award for Furniture & Accessories Fabrication (non-forged)” for its entry of a unique, custom stainless steel kitchen range hood.  The International competition was open to over 700 member firms from throughout the U.S. and 12 foreign countries, and recognized outstanding work in the ornamental and miscellaneous metals industry.

Foreman custom fabricated this range hood for homeowners Chad and Kate Angle, who said, “we spoke with many metal fabricators before choosing Foreman, and they were the only one we felt confident about.  They did an outstanding job!”  The final design for the range hood was the result of collaboration between Foreman and the Angles.  Kate did some research online, gathering images and ideas, and then worked with Foreman’s Project Manager, Andrew Ehlmann, to create an attractive ornamental custom design that would seamlessly cover their existing Viking exhaust unit.  The finished product is a beautiful, functional one-of-a-kind piece.

The clients couldn’t be more pleased with the finished product.  Kate Angle said, “The hood is really magnificent and it’s the crown jewel to my new kitchen!”  Kate and her husband often entertain large groups of friends and family at their home, and the range hood is the first thing her guests notice in her brand-new kitchen.  “Everyone comments how beautiful it is.”  When asked if she would recommend Foreman to others, Kate’s immediate response was, “Absolutely!”  Satisfied comments like these are why Foreman takes pride in every job; they know how important it is to be flexible with the changing wants and needs of customers to create outstanding finished products.

Founded in 1959, Foreman Fabricators is a premier fabricator of custom architectural metal items.  Examples of their work are all over the metropolitan area, from the railings surrounding the baggage carousels at Lambert International Airport, and the departure and arrival signs as well.  To the stainless steel countertops and ticket counters and brackets in Scottrade Center, as well as bar tops, bar footrails, bar waitress rails and some metal components in all the party suites.   To the aluminum flagpoles in the World Series Room in the Cardinals Museum, elevator cladding at Barnes Hospital, and on and on. As owner Brian Foreman says, “If you live in St. Louis, you’ve seen our work!”  Specializing in architectural metal fabrication, Foreman Fabricators can custom create almost anything in metal…from a single, unique bracket, to intricate hand railings, to one-of-a-kind architectural features for buildings.  With more than a half century of work in commercial venues and homes throughout the St. Louis area, there’s a good chance you’ve had your hand on a Foreman railing.

BMC Enterprises, Inc. Announces Three Aggregate Transactions in Missouri

in Companies/News

BMC Enterprises, Inc. (parent company of Breckenridge Material Company) is pleased to announce three additions to its Missouri aggregates business: the opening of a new BMC Stone quarry in High Hill, the acquisition of a strategic interest in Base Rock Minerals, LLC, a limestone quarry in Bonne Terre, and the subsequent acquisition of Strack Stone Company, a limestone quarry located just north of Cape Girardeau.  Strack Stone will now operate under the Base Rock Minerals name.

Nathan G. McKean, Chief Executive Officer of BMC Enterprises, Inc., stated, “We are delighted to announce these aggregate acquisitions, which demonstrate our continued commitment to a sustainable growth strategy.  The pro-business administration in Jefferson City has given us a renewed optimism about the Missouri economy.”  McKean added further, “We are pleased to partner with the Bauman Family and are looking forward to continued growth with our limestone businesses in southern Missouri.  We are also very excited with the new opportunities these transactions will bring to everyone involved with the parent organization.”

The three quarries vertically position BMC along the major interstate corridors from its hub in St. Louis Metro. “This will dramatically increase our ability to service our customers with expanded product offerings,” said McKean, “and will enable the parent company to participate more fully in future transportation and infrastructure investment in the state.”

The acquisitions now bring the total number of vertical and horizontal acquisitions for BMC Enterprises, Inc. to 10 since 2009 and 19 since Nathan McKean became CEO in 2004.


Founded in 1925, Breckenridge Material Company, a subsidiary of BMC Enterprises, Inc. is a privately held and operated construction materials company headquartered in St. Louis.

$32 Million Expansion Taking Shape At Mcknight Place

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New 90-unit assisted living building, set to open this fall, will increase the footprint of The Gatesworth campus to more than a million square feet, bring 90 to 100 new jobs to St. Louis. 

With the roof and crowning cupola now in place on the new McKnight Place Assisted Living expansion, representatives of The Gatesworth senior living community marked a milestone in the development of the latest addition to the 15-acre Gatesworth campus. Scheduled to open this fall, the new 3 story, 102,000-square-foot building will feature 90 new, upscale apartment homes. The addition is part of a $32 million expansion of McKnight Place Assisted Living that will occur in two phases, with the second phase to include a complete renovation of the existing 74,000-square-foot McKnight Place Assisted Living building which, upon completion in March 2018, will feature 18 additional assisted living apartments and 27 separate memory care apartments. Together, the new and renovated buildings will have the capacity to provide more of the all-inclusive, high-quality services McKnight Place has come to be known for.

The new expansion is designed to increase capacity, while also offering larger apartments and more floor plan options that include roomy suites and one-bedroom apartments with kitchenettes. Assisted living apartments will feature four floor plans ranging in size from 376 to 783 square feet. All apartments in the new building will offer a host of upscale amenities, including entry foyers with wood style flooring; crown molding; kitchens with brushed glazed wood cabinets, granite countertops, and full-sized refrigerators; spacious, luxuriously appointed bathrooms; nine and 10-foot ceilings; loads of natural light featuring large PellaÒ windows; ample closet space and ducted heating and cooling systems with individual thermostats in each apartment.

Additional amenities within the new building’s common areas include a stately new assisted living entrance; a gracious community living room and lounge area with a view over the beautifully landscaped courtyard featuring a fountain; an elegant main floor dining room, café bistro and a private dining room; a large fitness/wellness gym; a 45-seat theater/chapel; card rooms; a billiard room; a full-service beauty salon; an art room; a greenhouse, and landscaped gardens with pergolas and a fountain. All of the new amenities will enhance the existing robust schedule of entertainment, activities and social outings, while residents will also be able to continue to enjoy the supportive services that make life easier and more convenient, including on-site physical and occupational therapy and nursing care, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. There will be a licensed nurse on site 24 hours a day.

Renovations to create the new memory care wing will begin in November following completion of the new expansion. The renovations will include a separate memory care entrance providing access to 27 memory care apartments for residents with cognitive impairments, such as dementia and Alzheimer’s.

“We are excited to see our McKnight Place Assisted Living expansion continue to take shape with the construction of the newest building on our campus and the planned renovation of our existing assisted living building,” said Bob Leonard, Director of Operations for The Gatesworth Communities. “The amenities, services and staffing levels offered to assisted living residents at McKnight Place are truly unparalleled, and we can’t wait to give even more St. Louis seniors the opportunity to experience all that we have to offer.”

The McKnight Place expansion will increase the footprint of The Gatesworth campus to over one million square feet and further enhance the comprehensive level of the continuum of care services available to the residents. Within the 15-acre Gatesworth campus, seniors have access to independent living options at The Gatesworth, as well as extended care and assisted living services through McKnight Place. Upon the completion of the renovation of the existing McKnight Place assisted living building, seniors will also, for the first time, have the opportunity to take advantage of a dedicated memory care offering within the sought after retirement community.

With over 500 employees, the locally owned and operated Gatesworth campus is estimated to be one of the largest employers in University City, and the number of staff members is expected to grow by almost 20 percent with the openings of the new and renovated assisted living buildings. An additional 50 new employees will be hired this year to staff the new building, with another 40 employees to be hired in early 2018 for positions at the renovated assisted living and memory care building. As the construction and renovation phases continue, 80-100 construction workers will be on the job site daily.

Serving as the general contractor on the McKnight Place expansion project is GateCo Development. Chris Leonard, VP of Development and Construction for GateCo, leads a team of senior housing development experts that handles all new construction and renovation projects within The Gatesworth campus. Additional members of the project team include the Lawrence Group which is serving as architect; the Sterling Company, which is handling civil engineering; Alper Audi, Inc., which is handing structural engineering; Jarrell Mechanical Contractors, which is the Mechanical Design-Build Contractor; Guarantee Electrical, which is the Electrical Design-Build Contractor; Plumbing Planning Corp. which is the Plumbing Design-Build Contractor; and Ahern Fire Protection, which is serving as the Fire Protection Design-Build Contractor. Funding for the project comes in the form of a HUD-insured mortgage.

“This is a very exciting time for The Gatesworth community,” noted Chris Leonard. “We are committed to providing an environment in which St. Louis area seniors can access the highest-quality continuum of care services in an elegant, residential setting, and this expansion will make it possible for us to meet the needs of more seniors than ever before.”

For more information on the McKnight Place expansion, visit or call (314) 993-3333. For details on The Gatesworth community and its continuum of care services, visit or call (314) 993-0111.

Western Specialty Contractors Receives ICRI-Chicago Chapter Award of Excellence for Outstanding Concrete Repair Project

in Companies/News

Unforeseen sub-structure work and continued operation of garage posed challenges

Western Specialty Contractors – Chicago Concrete Restoration Branch was recently honored with a “2016 Award of Excellence” for Outstanding Concrete Repair Project from the International Concrete Restoration Institute (ICRI) Chicago Chapter for restoration of the aging Hilton Orrington Evanston Hotel parking garage.

Constructed in the mid-1920s, the Hilton Orrington Parking Garage is a stand-alone parking structure located adjacent to the Hilton Orrington Hotel in Evanston, IL. Its interior concrete had degraded due to the corrosive action of chlorides, such as salt, and natural life-cycle deterioration to the point where falling concrete was posing a safety hazard to visitors.

The original scope of work included renovating the interior of the four-deck garage; demolition and replacement of deteriorated concrete ramps, columns and beams; as well as ancillary HVAC, electrical and fire alarm work necessary to bring the facility up to current codes.

James McHugh Construction Co. acted as the general contractor on the $3.3 million project, in tandem with design engineer CTL Group and key repair contractor Western Specialty Contractors – Chicago Concrete Restoration branch.

The restoration team faced several unforeseen challenges on the project due to the garage’s advanced age and deterioration. Further complicating the project, the hotel owner also requested that the garage not be shut down for extended periods of time during the restoration, plus the garage’s first floor was occupied by several small businesses, so construction noise, dust and disruption also had to be kept to a minimum.

“Despite the need for repairs, the continued operation of this parking garage was determined to be key to the successful operation of the adjacent hotel. Therefore, the garage could not be shut down for extended periods of time, and could not go off-line for materials to be removed and replaced,” said Steve Genovese, Western Chicago Concrete Branch Manager. “Occupant safety was also a top consideration since construction activities could dislodge concrete spalls above the ceilings in the occupied spaces. Plus, the owner only allowed ‘noisy’ repairs to be performed three days a week.”

As a result of multiple generations of previous, un-engineered repairs to the structure, additional un-foreseen restoration of the steel sub-structure was required, further complicating the project.

Excavated openings revealed unattached amalgams of various types, sizes and arrangements of reinforcing steel in each opening. This required repair excavations to grow significantly in order to uncover sound reinforcement and concrete, said Genovese.

Western Specialty Contractors worked closely with the general contractor and engineer to coordinate excavations with repair evaluations since each opening required custom engineering to address the uncovered conditions.

“The repair locations were quite large, resulting in on average close to 20 yards of concrete material, or two truckloads, for each patch,” said Genovese. “On average, eight workers were onsite for the duration of the project, mainly because only certain sections of the garage were allowed to be repaired at a time. The deck is four levels, with the first two levels still needing availability for parking, and where most of the repairs were found.”

The restoration team was able to devise some creative solutions to keep the project running smoothly, such as eliminating a portion of the topside and underside repairs to a true full-depth repair, along with phasing. The aging, cast-in-place 8″ to 10″ concrete slabs circumvented doubling the project schedule even though the repair quantities doubled.

Despite the challenges, only three months were added to the original six-month schedule due to collaboration by the entire project team.

“The project posed substantial obstacles including technical, emission control and personnel safety. Changes to concrete and steel conditions drove quantity increases during the work, requiring close and timely coordination with the design engineer,” said Steve Bush, Superintendent, James McHugh Construction Co. “The stacked configuration of the parking ramp mandated stringent safety precautions during demolition and repair. Work was completed without injury to staff or reportable emissions from the garage.”

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

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