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St. Louis-Kansas City Carpenters Regional Council, St. Louis City NAACP to Pursue Airport Improvements

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St. Louis-Kansas City Carpenters Regional Council, St. Louis City NAACP to Pursue Airport Improvements Organizations call for working group’s documents and will pursue bids for City St. Louis, Mo.— St. Louis – Kansas City Carpenters Regional Council and the St. Louis City NAACP today called on the City of St. Louis to release all documents produced and received by the Airport Working Group.

At a press conference, the two organizations also announced they plan to work with interested coalitions to submit plans to the City despite last month’s decision to halt the process. “We were disappointed by last month’s decision to pull the plug on exploring a public-private partnership at Lambert Airport,” said Al Bond, Carpenters Union Executive Secretary-Treasurer.

“This isn’t the end of the road. Citizens deserve to see what such a partnership could accomplish, and they ultimately deserve a vote on the project.” “The fact the County’s Port Authority and several other governmental leaders are exploring ways to improve Lambert without City of St. Louis citizens’ input reinforces the need for a process that considers all proposals prior to making any decisions.”

Bond and Pruitt announced they have jointly submitted an open records request to the City in an effort to make public all work done by the Airport Working Group. St. Louis citizens deserve to see what upgrades and improvements are possible, the two leaders said. Both Bond and Pruitt also urged interested coalitions to submit proposals to the City, and encouraged officials to welcome them.

Citizens, they said, should have the opportunity to have a voice in the process and, ultimately, a vote. A public-private partnership remains the only way to generate a revenue stream to address the needs of residents without raising taxes. Upgrading the airport and developing the surrounding vacant land has serious economic development potential that could put thousands of local residents to work.

Southern Illinois Builders Association Awards Scholarships

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The Southern Illinois Builders Association awarded eighteen scholarships this year. Congratulations to: Richard Boyer, III, Swansea, IL; Blake Branz, O’Fallon, IL; Andrew Dant, Highland, IL; Noah Feldott, Belleville, IL; Victoria Gravot, Smithton, IL; Dylan Hites, O’Fallon, IL; Josie Hogue, Maryville, IL; Arianna Kampwerth, Highland, IL; Evan Wade Kieffer, Mt. Carmel, IL; Jason Koerkenmeier, St. Rose, IL; Caden Lansford, Farmington, IL; Jackson Moore, Centralia, IL; Damian Pohlman, Hardin, IL; Raeligh Lucille Schneider, Addieville, IL; Stephen Schniers, Highland, IL; William Seibert, Mascoutah, IL; Austin B. Sparks, Edwardsville, IL; Matthew Tipton, St. Jacob, IL; and Lucas Theising, Bartelso, IL.

Thanks to the SIBA Education Committee for their assistance: Gregg Korte; Mike Boucher; Dave Birk; Mike Gould; and Phil Kingdon. SIBA solicits candidates for the SIBA Scholarships in the fall and requests that information be submitted by midNovember in order for the SIBA Education Committee to meet and make their selections.

To be eligible for an SIBA Scholarship. candidates must be pursuing a degree in the field of Construction Management / Construction Related Engineering / Architectural. To obtain a complete list of requirements for the SIBA scholarships, please contact Donna at the SIBA office 618-624-9055.

Photo Above: Back row left to right: Dave Birk; Mike Gould; Lucas Theising; Drew Dant; Blake Branz; Richard Boyer, III; Noah Feldott; Dylan Hites Front row left to right: Victoria Gravot; Arianna Kampwerth; Josie Hogue; Caden Lansford; Raeligh Schneider; Evan Kieffer; Mike Boucher

American Subcontractors Association Midwest Council Meet the General Contractors Expo

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The American Subcontractors Association (ASA) – Midwest Council will host its annual Meet the General Contractors Expo on January 29, 2020 at the St. Charles Convention Center in St. Charles, MO. The yearly event gives area subcontractors and construction professionals the opportunity for valuable face-to-face time with some of St. Louis’ top general contractors.

The expo provides an ideal opportunity for construction industry professionals to network with general contractors, all in one place and in a relaxed setting. The expo is specifically designed for networking and building relationships with multiple representatives from the area general contractors.  There are 35 GC exhibitors participating in 2020.

  • 2020 General Contractor Exhibitors:
    Alberici Constructors
  • ARCO Construction
  • BEX Construction Services
  • Brinkmann Constructors
  • BSI Constructors
  • Clayco
  • Contegra Construction Company
  • Conway Contracting Inc.
  • Eagan Building Group
  • Echelon Constructors
  • HBD Construction, Inc.
  • Holland Construction Services, Inc.
  • IMPACT Strategies, Inc.
  • Interface Construction Corporation
  • Kadean Construction
  • KAI Enterprises
  • KCI Construction Company
  • The Korte Company
  • Kozeny-Wagner, Inc.
  • L. Keeley Construction
  • Landco Construction
  • Lawrence Group Projects
  • McCarthy Building Companies, Inc.
  • McGrath & Associates
  • Paric Corporation
  • Pinnacle Contracting, Inc.
  • Poettker Construction Company
  • R.G. Ross Construction Company
  • Rhodey Construction
  • River City Construction
  • S. M. Wilson & Co.
  • Sitelines, Inc.
  • Tarlton Corporation
  • United Construction Ent. Co. of St. Louis
  • Wright Construction Services, Inc.

Advance Expo Registration is $65 for ASA Members and $95 for Non-Members. Registration includes hosted bar and appetizers. Register online at https://asamidwest.com/asaevents/8550/ by January 22nd. After the 22nd there is a $30 surcharge on late registration, so register early.  Advance Registration is required, and space is filling up very quickly! 

Last year’s event drew more than 1200 attendees. This year the  Expo is moving to the lower level convention space to accommodate our ever-growing crowd! ASA will also have a booth at the expo with information about the St. Louis chapter, and details of upcoming industry events for 2020.  The event is open to ASA Members only from 3:00 to 4:30 p.m., and then open to all registered attendees from 4:30 to 7:00 p.m.

The American Subcontractors Association (ASA) Midwest Council is a construction trade association made up of quality specialty subcontractors and suppliers serving the construction industry and the community in the greater St. Louis metropolitan area and southern Illinois. For more information about the ASA Midwest Council, visit www.asamidwest.com or contact Executive Director, Susan Winkelmann at 314-845-0855. ASA Midwest Council – Building. Community. Est. 1967

St. Louis Regional Freightway’s 2019 Highlights

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More than one billion in infrastructure investment 

The St. Louis Regional Freightway has compiled a summary of the major developments in 2019 that either elevated the St. Louis region’s global status as a world-class freight hub or will help to advance the region’s position as the country’s freight nexus in the year ahead.

“From mega projects breaking ground and global companies choosing to invest here, to newly formed partnerships that strengthen the bi-state region’s role in national and global supply chains, there was much to be excited about in 2019,” said Mary Lamie, Executive Vice President of Multi-Modal Enterprises for Bi-State Development, which oversees the St. Louis Regional Freightway. “Even more exciting, however, is the future positive impact we expect on our region.”

While Lamie notes there were dozens of announcements or developments that contribute to the organization’s optimism for the future, the St. Louis Regional Freightway narrowed its summary list to focus on just a sampling of the most significant that relate to the region’s freight network or infrastructure. Following is a look at some of the highlights:

Investments in Priority Infrastructure Projects Top $1 Billion

It is difficult to tally up every infrastructure project funded or under construction in 2019, but based on the St. Louis Regional Freightway’s tracking, more than $1 billion in critical projects are moving forward. These projects have been identified as priorities for the St. Louis region by business and industry leaders in the private sector, in addition to local and state officials, the Missouri and Illinois Departments of Transportation (DOTs) and the East-West Gateway Council of Governments Board of Directors. These projects are supported by public and private funding and include:

  • MoDOT’s $278 million project to overhaul an eight-mile stretch of Interstate 270 – its largest project in a decade. An additional $84.5 million was allocated for work on I-270 in Madison County, Ill., as part of IDOT’s annual Multi-Year Improvement Program. These add to $500 million in work already underway on this major logistics corridor.
  • The $222 million project to replace the 129-year old Merchants Bridge, a vital artery across the Mississippi River and a primary east-west rail corridor serving the nation’s third largest rail hub. The new double track bridge, being funded by the Terminal Railroad Association of St. Louis, will help move freight faster and more reliably and cost-effectively.
  • The new $59 million Interstate 255/Davis Street Ferry Road Interchange in St. Clair County, Ill., which will help facilitate growth of Union Pacific Railroad’s intermodal yard by reducing travel times and transportation costs.
  • Projects included in Missouri Governor Michael Parson’s recently announced Cost Share Program, including $4.7 million to improve Route A serving the GM Wentzville Assembly Plant and to add an additional lane on I-70 in O’Fallon, Mo., to add capacity.

 Industrial Real Estate Sector Thrives

The St. Louis region’s industrial sector continued to shine in 2019, with new data underscoring the dramatic recent growth being fueled by the availability of space and speed of delivery, an available, job-ready workforce, and exceptional freight assets. Examples include:

  • Manufacturers of all sizes continue to invest in the region, led by General Motors which will invest $1.5 billion at its Wentzville facility, retaining 4,000 jobs. Boeing Co. has announced a $70 million expansion of its missile and munitions plant in St. Charles, Mo., and expanded its operations at MidAmerica St. Louis Airport in St. Clair County, Ill., the designated test site for Boeing’s MQ-25TM Autonomous Air Refueling Platform. Melton Machine & Control Co., announced a new 42-acre campus in Washington, Mo., where it will manufacture equipment for the automotive industry.
  • Since 2014, more than 25 million square feet of new industrial space has been constructed or is currently under construction in the St. Louis, Mo. region, and more than 75% of that represents buildings topping 250,000 square feet. Much of this construction has been focused on the north Interstate I-270 Corridor that spans two states.
  • Amazon opened its first Missouri distribution center in St. Peters, Mo., at the growing Premier 370 Industrial Park. Fenton Logistics Park in South St. Louis County – site of the former Chrysler plant – reached 648,411 square feet of completed space. In North St. Louis County, Aviator Business Park is adding 640,182 square feet of speculative distribution space. NorthPoint and Exeter entered the Metro East market, each adding a building topping 500,000 square feet.

St. Louis Region’s Position as a World Class Logistics Hub Enhanced

Since 2015, the St. Louis Regional Freightway has been elevating awareness of the region’s incredible freight assets, which include being home to one of America’s largest inland ports; four interstates with national access; five airports with capacity, and six Class I railroads. As the region continues to move up in key rankings and distinguish itself based on other unique factors, it garnered nearly $518,000 in regional and national media coverage during the calendar year.

  • The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers reaffirmed that the St. Louis region’s port system remains the most efficient inland port in the nation, and it moved up to become the second largest inland port system in terms of tonnage moved in 2018.
  • A 15-mile section of the Mississippi River in the St. Louis region delivers the highest level of grain barge handling anywhere along the Mississippi River. Now, thanks to a new partnership between the St. Louis Regional Freightway, 39 North and World Trade Center of St. Louis, this “Ag Coast of America” is expanding and leveraging the region’s leadership in agriculture technology (agtech) research, production and transportation to address global food security concerns.
  • 2019 also saw the St. Louis Regional Freightway forge a partnership with the Port of Savannah which has identified the St. Louis region as a key import/export market to which containers can consistently be distributed by rail at a lower cost for shippers. Meanwhile, efforts to deliver new Container on Vessel service to transport freight along the Mississippi River and its tributaries continue to gain steam, with the St. Louis region set to serve as a key terminal.

Region Welcomes Expanded Presence of Global and Growing Corporations

Bayer’s $60 billion merger with Monsanto in 2018 made Missouri the number one state in the nation for Foreign Direct Investment; and 2019 saw additional commitments from global companies and growing domestic firms.

  • Bunge recently announced plans to relocate its global headquarters from New York to the St. Louis region as it seeks to leverage the agriculture production and distribution concentrated in this area and the Mississippi River and its tributaries.
  • Bayer AG announced this past summer that it would be moving 500 agtech jobs to Creve Coeur, Mo., where the company plans to invest $164 million to expand and improve its facilities.
  • Fast-growing Benson Hill Biosystems is building a new headquarters in the 39 North district in Creve Coeur, Mo.

“The level of cooperation and commitment from this region that includes two states and over 15 counties is unprecedented and is contributing to many of the successes the region enjoyed in 2019,” said Lamie.

About St. Louis Regional Freightway

The St. Louis Regional Freightway is a Bi-State Development enterprise formed to create a regional freight district and comprehensive authority for freight operations and opportunities within eight counties in Illinois and Missouri which comprise the St. Louis metropolitan area. Public sector and private industry businesses are partnering with the St. Louis Regional Freightway to establish the bi-state region as one of the premier multimodal freight hubs and distribution centers in the United States through marketing, public advocacy, and freight and infrastructure development. To learn more, visit thefreightway.com.

Home Builders Association Donates More than $14,000 to Caring Solutions

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On behalf of the Home Builders Charitable Foundation (HBCF), 2019 HBA President John Suelthaus of Kingbridge Homes (left) presented a $14,468 donation to Madi Hawn, founder and chief executive officer of Caring Solutions (center), and Sally Boyd, development director for Caring Solutions.

The donation will go toward the construction of a safety/privacy fence and installation of interior and exterior security cameras at two Caring Solutions’ homes in Ferguson where vulnerable individuals with autism and developmental disabilities reside. Since 2001, Caring Solutions has provided community-based residential services and support for children and adults with autism and other developmental disabilities.

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.

Home Builders Association Donates More than $14,000 to Caring Solutions

in Associations/News

On behalf of the Home Builders Charitable Foundation (HBCF), 2019 HBA President John Suelthaus of Kingbridge Homes (left) presented a $14,468 donation to Madi Hawn, founder and chief executive officer of Caring Solutions (center), and Sally Boyd, development director for Caring Solutions.

The donation will go toward the construction of a safety/privacy fence and installation of interior and exterior security cameras at two Caring Solutions’ homes in Ferguson where vulnerable individuals with autism and developmental disabilities reside. Since 2001, Caring Solutions has provided community-based residential services and support for children and adults with autism and other developmental disabilities.

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.

Electrical Connection Brightens the Holidays Through Support of “Shop with a Cop” Programs

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The Electrical Connection is again a major supporter of rural and urban law enforcement community trust building programs called “Shop with a Cop.”  The labor-management partnership contributed $5,000 each to the St. Francois County “Shop with a Cop” and Ferguson “Shop with a Cop.” The Electrical Connection is a partnership of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 1 and the St. Louis Chapter, National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA).  This year’s donation raises the Electrical Connection’s 27-year commitment to “Shop with a Cop” to more than $85,000.

The St. Francois County “Shop with a Cop” program is among the oldest and largest in the nation.  This year, it served a record 537 children on Dec. 19, 2019 when law enforcement throughout the state came to the Farmington, Mo. Wal-Mart to buy children holiday gifts they would not otherwise receive.  It was the 27th year that the Electrical Connection has supported the St. Francois County “Shop with a Cop.”

Meanwhile, the Ferguson police department hosted its “Shop with a Cop” program at the Ferguson Community Center at 1050 Smith Ave. on Dec. 12, 2019, serving more than 30 children. Gifts at the Ferguson event were purchased at Target. The Electrical Connection has supported the Ferguson “Shop with a Cop” for the past four years.

The Electrical Connection partnered with Saint Louis FC at to support both “Shop with a Cop” events.  During the summer, they teamed on a fundraiser at a Saint Louis FC game to raise money for both programs.

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 www.electricalconnection.org.

IFMA St. Louis Supports Heat Up St. Louis

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Organization provides resources to keep those in need warm during the winter

The St. Louis Chapter of the International Facility Management Association (IFMA) provided some warmth to the region’s needy this winter.

Representing facility managers and suppliers who maintain the region’s commercial buildings, IFMA St. Louis presented a check for $1,000 to Heat Up St. Louis. The nonprofit organization builds awareness and provides resources to help those in need, especially the elderly and disabled, and needy families with critically ill children, avoid illnesses and deaths during the area’s bitter winter season.

The Rev. Earl E. Nance Jr., Chair Emeritus and Treasurer, and Gentry Trotter, Executive Director, of Heat Up St. Louis, accepted the donation for the organization. IFMA St. Louis also funds the organization’s Cool Down St. Louis, which provides services and support to keep residents cool during the hot summer months.

IFMA St. Louis has supported the weather-related assistance programs for the past six years. The nonprofit organization helps defray the cost of energy to heat and cool residences, serving more than 300,000 area residents since the programs’ inception in 2000.

IFMA St. Louis offers its members a learning and networking environment among its diverse membership and supplies its members with the tools to achieve their professional goals. Started in 1985, IFMA St. Louis has more than 250 members representing small and Fortune 500 companies throughout the region. Considered a leader among local chapters, IFMA St. Louis holds monthly programs to enhance members’ knowledge and provide networking opportunities. For more information, visit www.ifma.org.

$1 BILLION+ in New St. Louis Area Infrastructure Construction Projects to be Unveiled

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More than $1 billion in new infrastructure-related construction projects to be started around the St. Louis metropolitan area in 2020 will be unveiled for interested contractors and the public at the SITE Improvement Association’s 2020 Investment in Infrastructure Expo on February 25 at the St. Charles Convention Center.  The new construction will include large projects from the Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT), Metropolitan Sewer District, the City of St. Louis, Jefferson County and other local governments and public entities.  The event will also include a trade show featuring construction industry suppliers and other exhibitors networking with Expo attendees and project owners.

“This is an exciting time for the construction industry in the St. Louis area, with projects ranging from road enhancements and bridge upgrades to the new National Geospatial Agency headquarters and the MLS soccer stadium in downtown,” said Terry Briggs, executive director of the SITE Improvement Association.  “This Expo will be an extremely important opportunity for contractors and suppliers to learn more about infrastructure projects and prepare to bid successfully on them.  Last year more than 400 attendees and 35 exhibitors participated at the Expo, and we expect that the large amount of new construction to be unveiled will attract an even larger crowd in 2020.”

The Expo will begin at 1:30 pm with four concurrent presentations outlining more than $1 billion in new construction work and what prospective bidders for that work need to know. The trade show and networking session will then be held from 3:45 – 6:00 p.m. in the exhibit hall, with refreshments available at no additional cost.  Presenters scheduled from 1:30 – 3:45 pm include the following:

*   Tom Blair, P.E., District Engineer, St. Louis District of MoDOT covering, Franklin, Jefferson, St. Charles and St. Louis counties along with the city of St. Louis;
*   Rich Unverferth, Director of Engineering for the Metropolitan St. Louis Sewer<https://www.stlmsd.com/customer-service/glossary/letter_s#Sewer> District<https://www.stlmsd.com/customer-service/glossary/letter_d#District>;
*   John P. Kohler, P.E., Planning and Programming Manager, City of Saint Louis Board of Public Service; and
*   Jason Jonas, Public Works Director for Jefferson County.

The 2020 Investment in Infrastructure Expo is open to contractors, subcontractors, suppliers, professional services firms and other businesses connected to the construction industry.  Tickets are required and can be purchased by visiting www.sitestl.org or calling 314-966-2950.

SITE Improvement Association is an independent construction contractor group representing more than 220 contractors and businesses primarily in the concrete, earthmoving, landscaping, asphalt paving, highway/bridge, sewer/utility and specialty construction segments. For more information, visit www.sitestl.org<http://www.sitestl.org>.

 

Noise Issues In The Construction Industry: Protecting Against Worker Hearing Loss

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Hearing loss is a major health issue for construction industry workers. Studies how that occupational noise exposure causes between 7 and 21% of hearing loss among workers across all industries, with those in the construction and agricultural industries among the most vulnerable. Corey Heniser, a vehicle safety expert at Brigade Electronics INC, discusses how the construction industry can help limit noise pollution on worksites.

Noise is inevitable in the construction industry; anyone working in this sector knows that ‘a quiet life’ is never going to be part of their job description. The danger, however, is that long-term exposure to high noise levels can cause Noise-Induced Hearing Loss (NIHL), usually resulting from extended exposure to sound levels at or above 85 dBA (average decibel levels). Symptoms include deafness and tinnitus, a distressing ringing in the ears that can have a highly detrimental impact on quality of life.

The World Health Organization reports that worldwide, NIHL is the most prevalent irreversible occupational hazard. Once the damage is done, it’s often too late to be remedied. To compound the issue, workers with compromised hearing are themselves at further risk of danger since they may have trouble hearing warning alarms or safety instructions while on-site.

Fortunately, there are many ways that noise levels can be reduced on construction sites. For example, smarter design methods mean that ducts can be incorporated into a wall at manufacturing stage rather than being chased out on-site. Power tools are being adapted and developed to be ever quieter, and hearing protection can be worn when it is safe to do so. Some noises, such as the tonal ‘beep beep’ of vehicle reversing alarms can be eliminated entirely using the latest backup alarms on the market.

It’s estimated that every day, four million workers in the US endure damaging noise levels while at work.

A decade-long study incorporating hearing tests of more than 1.4 million American workers found that construction accounted for the second-highest prevalence of workers with impaired hearing. 16% of construction workers tested positive for some form of hearing impairment, with 3% classed as moderate or worse impairment.

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that workers in US construction lost 3.09 healthy years per 1,000 workers due to their job. Consequently, the CDC emphasizes the importance of regular hearing tests for workers to enable early intervention if a problem is detected.

Commercial vehicle safety systems, including reversing alarms, have long been a solution to alerting those on the ground to danger when a heavy vehicle is moving. But research has shown that old-fashioned tonal alarms may be causing significant noise pollution on construction sites, and to people living and working nearby. In addition, it’s not always possible to locate the direction from which the alarm originates, meaning its effectiveness can be severely compromised, especially if several alarms are sounding at once.

Multi-frequency alarms are helping to address this problem. Rather than the traditional ‘beep beep’ of tonal alarms, they create a ‘ssh-ssh’ sound which is gentle on the ear and dissipates quickly. The alarm can therefore be instantly located and heard only in the danger zone. In adverse conditions, for example if rain is pounding down, the warning decibel level will be increased, but only to the minimum level required to ensure the alarm is heard.

Regular monitoring of employees’ hearing alongside reviews of worksite practices and strict adherence to noise guidelines are essential to protect workers from the cumulative effects of worksite noise.

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