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Hillsboro Harvest Market To Be Highlighted By First-Ever Monster Building Competition

in Companies/News

Main Street in historic downtown Hillsboro is gearing up for the popular Harvest Market, sponsored by Imagine Hillsboro, and this year’s event – set for Saturday, Oct. 5 – is shaping up to be spooktacular. Now in its fifth year, the treasured community tradition will feature “Chalk of the Town”, where visitors can enjoy turning Main Street into a masterpiece, a Chili Cook-off competition and spooky Ghost Tours. Unique to the festival this year, local manufacturer Atlas 46 is teaming up with the City of Hillsboro to host the first-ever Hillsboro Haunting Monster Building Competition, where teams will battle head to head to design and build the best monster creation, with various great prizes up for grabs, including a $1,000 grand prize.

The monstrous event will feature two categories of competition – the Competitive Build providing skilled builders the opportunity to showcase their talents, and a Fun Family Build exposing future generations to the thrill of creating something from a pile of raw materials as they get a glimpse into the world of manufacturing. Area residents are invited to come out and cheer on their favorite team during the building event, which will take place in front of the Orpheum Theater along Main Street in downtown Hillsboro. The Fun Family Build will kick off the day’s festivities at 10 a.m., followed by the Competitive Build from 12 p.m. – 2 p.m.

“The Harvest Market is truly one of Hillsboro’s most fun and unique events, filled with small town charm and offering something for everyone, including a variety of vendors with unique handmade and vintage items, live entertainment, specialty food booths, and downtown businesses running specials that coincide with the fall market,” said Jonathan Weyer, Community Planner for the City of Hillsboro. “We couldn’t be more excited to be teaming with Atlas 46 to add another great element to this year’s event and look forward to a wonderful turn out of area residents and visitors who will get to experience Hillsboro as a great place to live, work, learn and play.”

While participants in the building competition are welcome to bring their own cordless tools on the day of the event, team members will only be allowed to use the materials provided to construct their monster, including wood, chicken wire, pool noodles, donated clothes, etc.

During the free Fun Family Build competition, teams of no more than four – including at least one adult and one child – will have one hour to construct their monster using precut materials only. Hand saws may be used as available by the teams. Contest winners will be decided by a team of judges, with the top three teams receiving a new, All American 75/25 Duffle Bag valued at $75. Teams will be allowed to take their creations home following the event, and team members age 12 and under will also get to keep their Atlas 46 apron provided to them at check-in.

Competitive Build teams must pay a $25 entry fee and are allowed a maximum of three members per team. Community cutting stations will be available for straight/angled cuts only (miter saws will be used), and volunteers will be available to make those cuts if needed. Monsters must be a minimum of four feet tall and free-standing. Winners of the Competitive Build contest will be decided by popular vote from event attendees, with First Place taking home the grand prize of $1,000. Second runner-up will be awarded a $250 gift card to Atlas 46 and third place will receive an Atlas 46 Quick Detach Yorktown Tool Roll valued at $135. Monster creations will be displayed at a local Hillsboro business through the month of October.

“We are thrilled to offer this fun, creative contest to showcase the many talents of industry professionals and to introduce youth and their families to the manufacturing world with the Monster Building Competition,” said Brian Carver, President of Atlas 46, which opened a manufacturing facility in Hillsboro in 2018. “As a company committed to delivering American-made products based on quality driven innovative designs, we’re proud to put together an event that highlights the building process and look forward to continuing to grow with the Hillsboro community.”

Pre-registration is required to participate in the Monster Building Competition and the deadline to register is Oct. 2. For additional questions or more information, visit For more information on the Harvest Market, visit Imagine Hillsboro on Facebook.

With locations in Fenton, MO and Hillsboro, IL, Atlas 46 designs, develops, and manufactures innovative, premium workwear and gear for the construction, carpentry, electrical, maintenance, off-roading, DIY, and woodworking industries. For more information, visit or find Atlas 46 on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.  

People On The Move In The Local Construction Industry

in Companies/News

The latest People in the News highlighting new hires, promotions, honors & recognition of the men and women in the St. Louis building community.

JLL expands brokerage team 


Christopher Taff

JLL today announced Christopher Taff and Stephen Lordo have joined the commercial real estate brokerage firm’s St. Louis office.

Taff is a vice president with JLL specializing in industrial real estate brokerage representing buyers, sellers, landlords, and tenants of manufacturing facilities, warehouses, distribution centers, and industrial investments. Previously with Hilliker Corporation, Taff has sold and leased more than 600,000 square feet in the St. Louis market since 2017.

Lordo has joined JLL as an associate with the firm’s office brokerage division after having worked for Cushman & Wakefield. JLL St. Louis is comprised of approximately 150 employees among its brokerage, property management, and project development services divisions.

JLL (NYSE: JLL) is a leading professional services firm that specializes in real estate and investment management. For further information, visit

Tarlton Promotes Doerr to Executive Vice President   

John Doerr

Tarlton Corp., a St. Louis-based general contracting and construction management firm, promoted industry veteran and Tarlton career employee John Doerr, P.E., to executive vice president.

Doerr has worked for Tarlton for 36 years, having served since 2002 as senior vice president. In his expanded executive leadership role, in addition to overseeing work acquisition and estimating efforts, Doerr is directing Tarlton’s self-performed and heavy industrial project management.

A Registered Professional Engineer in the state of Missouri, Doerr has more than 20 years of experience in estimating and has been a member of the American Society for Health Care Engineering since 2008. He has served as Tarlton project executive on dozens of projects for clients including BJC HealthCare, Washington University in St. Louis, The Muny, St. Louis Community College and others.

Doerr served as chairman of the Building Division for the Associated General Contractors of Missouri in 2017 and has been an active member of the AGC since 1984. He is chairman of the Saint Louis Art Museum Corporate Partnership Program and a member of the Signature Healthcare Foundation Board of Directors. Doerr also served on the Cor Jesu Academy Principal’s Council.

After graduating from the University of Missouri-Columbia with a Bachelor of Science in civil engineering, Doerr began his career at Tarlton as a project estimator. Four years later he was promoted to manager of estimating, serving in that capacity for six years before becoming a project director in 1994 and a vice president in 1999.

Daniel Morro, Former U.S. Department of Homeland Security Official, Joins Ross & Baruzzini As A Principal Security Advisor

Dan Morro

Ross & Baruzzini, a global technology consulting and engineering firm, has augmented its roster of security experts with the addition of Daniel Morro as a principal security advisor.  Morro brings more than 25 years of local, national and international law enforcement and security expertise and will provide strategic leadership for the firm’s security practice.

Morro brings notable expertise in international security issues with a focus on transnational criminal investigations related to border threats and security as well as counter-terrorism.  He has delivered briefings to the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate.

Before joining Ross & Baruzzini, Morro was a senior member of the U.SDepartment of Homeland Security (DHS) Investigations Division operating in Europe, West Africa, and more recently, Chicago, Ill.  He created and directed federal and joint-international task forces that targeted international drug trafficking and money laundering organizations. Prior to the inception of DHS, Morro was a special agent and task force officer with the U.S. Customs Service.

Morro holds a Juris doctorate from Chicago-Kent School of Law and a bachelor’s degree from Columbia University.  With diverse markets and a growing team of more than 400 professionals, Ross & Baruzzini offers highly specialized consulting and engineering services to clients around the globe. As an international leader in the security industry, Ross & Baruzzini’s services encompass the full spectrum of planning, design and construction, from initial assessment to tailored solutions that fortify security environments.

Founded in St. Louis in 1953, Ross & Baruzzini ( is an international engineering consulting and design firm continually ranked among the top companies in the nation.  It provides advanced solutions in the transportation, healthcare, government, higher education and mission-critical sectors.  

Danielle Bateman Girondo Named Executive Vice President of Marketing at Midwest BankCentre

Danielle Bateman Girondo

Bateman Girondohas been named executive vice president of marketing at Midwest BankCentre. She was previously senior director of marketing and advertising at Save-A-Lot food stores. She reports to Chief Executive Officer Orvin Kimbrough.

Girondo leads the marketing strategy and execution for the bank, including omni-channel marketing and advertising, consumer insights and analytics, brand management, internal communications and public relations. She brings 20-plus years of combined marketing and finance experience to her role.

Girondo has a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Washington University in St. Louis and a master’s degree in business administration from The Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania. She is on the Leadership Board for Wharton’s St. Louis Alumni Association and is a former board member of the Alliance for Audited Media (AAM). She was named to the 2016 edition of “Who’s Who In Marketing at Leading Retailers” and was named a Top Women in Grocery by Progressive Grocer in 2017.

September 13, 2019

Erica O’Connor Joins Geotechnology as Human Resources Manager

Erica O’Connor

Geotechnology, Inc., is pleased to announce hiring Erica O’Connor to serve as our corporate Human Resources (HR) Manager. She is based in the firm’s St. Louis headquarters.

In this role, Ms. O’Connor will direct and coordinate all HR functions, including talent acquisition, compensation, benefits, training and development, safety, and employee relations, for Geotechnology’s ten offices. She will also be responsible for compliance with federal, state and local requirements.

Ms. O’Connor has more than 15 years of human resources experience, having served in HR Management and HR administration roles. She earned her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from the University of Missouri-St. Louis, and is currently pursuing her Master of Arts in Human Resource Management through Lindenwood University.

Established more than 35 years ago, Geotechnology, Inc. is a professional corporation offering a comprehensive range of consulting services in applied earth and environmental sciences, including geophysics, underground consulting services, geotechnical and environmental engineering, materials testing and drilling. Geotechnology has provided expertise on thousands of major construction projects in the Midwest and Mid-South regions, and is ranked in ENR’s Top 500 Design Firms. The company is based in St. Louis, Missouri, and has offices in Missouri, Illinois, Kansas, Ohio, Kentucky, Tennessee, Mississippi and Arkansas. For more information, visit

Nation’s 103rd Largest Home Lender, Employee-Owned USA Mortgage, Promotes Two Senior Executives to New Leadership Roles

Ron Mueller

Fast-growing, employee-owned USA Mortgage (USA),the #1 home lender in Missouri and the 103rd largest home lender in the United States, has promoted two senior executives to new key leadership roles.  Announcing the management succession was Doug Schukar, who formed USA Mortgage as an operating subsidiary of holding company DAS Acquisition Company, LLC., in 2001.

Linda Pring

The moves are topped by Schukar, 55, handing off his duties as president of USA Mortgage to Executive Vice President (EVP) and Chief Operating Officer (COO) Linda Pring, a fixture at the home loan originator since 2001. Pring will retain her COO responsibilities for the time being while USA engages in a national search for a COO.

Linda Pring has been with me from Day One,” stated Schukar. “Words can’t describe the scope and significance of her contributions. She is a unique talent who inspires Nth degree professionalism from co-workers.”

Moving up to Executive Vice President of USA is Ron Mueller, 42, currently Senior Vice President (SVP). Mueller joined the firm in 2001 as a loan officer. He became a branch manager in 2006, a post he held until his promotion to SVP in 2018.

As chairman and chief executive officer (CEO) of DAS Acquisition, Schukar plans to devote more time to the Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP) adopted in 2017 when he transferred sole ownership of USA Mortgage to its employees. “As CEO of the holding company, a primary focus will be on growing the ESOP platform, a core component of our culture and legacy,” Schukar said. “I also anticipate working to surface new growth opportunities be they organic or achieved by merger or acquisition.”

The succession announcement comes on the heels of a successful 2018 in which USA Mortgage generated loan volume of more than $1.74 billion from 9,858 closings.

September 6, 2019

Chris Lozano Named President of Halcyon Shades 

Chris Lozano

St. Louis Marine combat veteran, attorney and businessman Chris Lozano has been named president of Halcyon Shades, headquartered in University City.  Lozano is using his diverse business and military operational background to revitalize the Halcyon brand of shading products.  Lozano’s focus is to upgrade Halcyon’s manufacturing technology and operations to expand their product lines and sales, with an emphasis on sustainable products.

“Window shades are no longer just an aesthetic, now they are an integral of a building’s overall energy profile,” says Lozano.  “Halcyon specializes in providing high tech shading materials and automated control systems that can significantly reduce energy costs.  Controlling the light and heat entering a building is paramount to every business and homeowner now – and we’ve found a way to deliver with attractive energy-efficient shading systems that allow natural light into the space.”

Under Lozano’s leadership, Halcyon is exploring partnerships with local manufacturing companies to create new products.  Lozano is also working with community partners, such as MADE St. Louis, to help in the creation of new manufacturing jobs in the St. Louis.  Many Halcyon products contribute to the LEED point system developed by the US Green Building Council.

Lozano has a law degree from Washington University and undergrad from St. Louis University.  He is a Marine and was called back to active duty after the September 11 attacks, where he served in combat operations in both Kuwait and Afghanistan.  He was awarded the Bronze Star. Lozano has also worked in leadership positions in several IT companies, prior to joining Halcyon Shades.  Lozano resides in St. Louis, and he and his wife have seven children.  His passions are supporting the causes of military veterans and building jobs for the middle-class.

Sam Golterman Joins G&S Acoustics as Project Assistant

Sam Golterman

St. Louis-based G&S Architectural Products has hired Sam Golterman as a Project Assistant. Sam’s responsibilities will include managing customer orders, creating shop drawings, issuing purchase orders and releasing orders to the company’s production shop.

Sam Golterman has sales experience across several industries, including marketing and insurance. Before joining G&S Architectural Products, Sam worked as an Inside Marketing Consultant with Dex Media in the Greater Denver Area. He has a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Marketing from the University of Kansas.

Sam hopes to have a positive impact by “aiding customers, contractors and architects throughout their sound solution process to ensure that every job is done with accuracy and professionalism.”

In his free time, Sam enjoys golf, tennis and other outdoor activities, as well as spending time with family and friends.  Sam is the son of Ned Golterman and is the fourth generation of the family to work in the business.

G&S Architectural Products is a leading provider and installer of architectural products such as acoustical products, visual display boards and operable wall systems that are primarily used for commercial, education and healthcare industries.

Matt Costello Promoted To Project Manager

Matt Costello

Mike Deihl, Director of Operations at Holland Construction Services (Holland), is pleased to announce the promotion of Matt Costello to Project Manager. 

“Matt’s can-do attitude, sense of urgency, and ability to get things done the right way are keys to his success,” said Deihl. “He is more than deserving of this promotion as this has been a long time coming.”

Costello joined Holland in 2014 as a Project Engineer.  He has worked on several notable projects including a new 300,600 square-foot, $34.5 million luxury apartment complex, Alinea at Town & Country, an addition and renovation project of the Behavioral Health Unit at Touchette Regional Hospital, a new nursing training facility at Missouri Baptist University and most recently a $28 million senior living facility in Westerville, Ohio.

Costello graduated with a degree in Construction Management from Missouri State University.  He has also received the Health Care Construction Certificate from the American Society for Healthcare Engineering.

Holland Construction Services is a full-service construction management, general contracting, and design/build firm based in Swansea, Ill., guided by the principle of providing clients the best possible building experience on every project.  For more information, visit Holland’s website

August 16, 2019

Allison Huggett Joins Geotechnology as Marketing Assistant

Allison Huggett

Geotechnology, Inc., is pleased to announce hiring Allison (Allie) Huggett to serve as Marketing Assistant. She is based in the firm’s St. Louis office.

Ms. Huggett’s responsibilities include assisting with the many tasks of the Marketing Department including preparing client submissions, project summaries, descriptions of speciality services, and professional resumes, for all ten Geotechnology offices, while upholding the company’s brand standards.

Before joining Geotechnology, Ms. Huggett served in a marketing position with an architectural design company and as an account representative with a marketing company. She earned her bachelor’s degree in international business with a focus in marketing from the University of Missouri, Robert J. Trulaske College of Business.

“We welcome Allie to our department and our company,” said Geotechnology Marketing Manager, Kelly Townsend. “Her skills and experience are valuable assets in helping us to better serve our clients and to grow our business.”

Established more than 35 years ago, Geotechnology, Inc. is a professional corporation offering a comprehensive range of consulting services in applied earth and environmental sciences, including geophysics, underground consulting services, geotechnical and environmental engineering, materials testing and drilling. For more information, visit

St. Louis CNR Magazine Welcomes Brandy Scheer

Brandy Scheer

St. Louis Construction News and Review Magazine welcomes Brandy Scheer as the publication’s newest team member.

Bringing 25-plus years of local industry marketing, sales and networking experience to the table, Scheer will work as St. Louis CNR’s marketing director and sales associate.

In her new position, Scheer will assist the St. Louis construction community in connect with one another and with St. Louis CNR’s readers.

Having previously worked with numerous local engineering and architectural firms and having worked as an editor and contributor to several local industry publications, Scheer understands key relationships that exist between readers, advertisers and community organizations. She embodies the professionalism, mission and values of St. Louis CNR.

Tyler Westerfeld joins Wiegmann Associates as Project Engineer

Tyler Westerfeld

Tyler Westerfeld of St. Charles, MO has joined Wiegmann Associates as a project engineer. Westerfeld is responsible for designing and engineering the heating, cooling and ventilation systems for various Wiegmann Associates projects. His tasks also include load calculation, sizing and selection of equipment, coordinating with other trades, creating permit drawings and providing construction support.

Westerfeld has a bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from the Missouri University of Science & Technology. He has also earned Engineer in Training (EIT) certification. Prior to being hired as a full-time employee, Westerfeld held two summer internships at Wiegmann Associates, where he gained experience in the HVAC industry and supported full-time project engineers.

Wiegmann Associates is a St. Louis-based mechanical contractor and a national leader in design/build HVAC projects. Since 1995, Wiegmann Associates has engineered and installed innovative, energy saving and cost-efficient HVAC solutions, refrigeration systems and automation controls for clients in a wide range of industries. For more information, visit or call (636) 940-1056.

Murphy Hires Coats; Promotes Kniesche

Jim Coats

Jim Coats has been named an HVAC/refrigeration project manager at Murphy Company. Bob Eichelberger, manager of refrigeration for the area’s largest mechanical contracting and engineering firm, made the announcement. Coats has nearly 25 years’ experience in the HVAC industry, most recently as president of his own consulting and manufacturers’ representative firm, Coapico Technologies, Inc. since 2011.  Prior to that he was a senior application engineer in the refrigeration industry, primarily serving Canadian food service clients. From 2005 to 2011 he served as a senior product engineer, providing industrial coils and hygienic air units throughout the country. He began his career in Mt. Vernon, IL where he served as a resident engineer and sales professional for design build HVAC business in a five-state region. He holds a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Illinois and is currently working towards an MBA at Webster University.

Nick Kniesche

Nicholas (Nick) M. Kniesche has been promoted to project  manager, commercial, for Murphy Company, a leading mechanical contracting and engineering firm. The announcement was made by Conrad Philipp, vice-president,commercial. A 2017 graduate of the University of Missouri-Columbia, Kniesche initially joined Murphy as a project management intern during the summers of 2015 and 2016. After graduation he was hired full-time as an engineer, commercial.  While at Mizzou Kniesche was 2015-17 president of Mizzou’s Mechanical Contractors Association of America student chapter, which is sponsored by MCA-EMO.  During his tenure the student chapter captured First Place in the Final Four Competition at the MCAA National Convention in San Diego in March 2017.  That same year the UMC student chapter also was named MCAA Student Chapter of the Year from among a total of 52 student chapters nationwide. He also is OSHA-10 certified. While studying at UMC, he also was executive treasurer of the United States Green Building Council (USGBC) student chapter for which he also served as a mentor for architectural studies.  He also was a member and sub chairman of the marketing committee for Pi Sigma Epsilon, a professional business fraternity.  Additionally, he was a member, executive secretary and member of the judicial board and finance committee, and Homecoming build chair for Alpha Tau Omega. An active community volunteer, he volunteered for Sacred Heart Church, Caring for Columbia, and the Thompson Center for Autism.

Founded in 1907, Murphy Company is one of the nation’s top mechanical contracting and engineering firms delivering innovative solutions to the commercial, industrial and institutional markets. For more information, visit

Spellman Brady & Company Expands Design Team 

Laura Kreher

Laura Kreher,  IIDA, LEED Green Associate 

Spellman Brady & Company, an award-winning interior design firm, is pleased to announce that Laura Kreher has joined the firm as a Designer.  In this role, her creativity will support the team with design, furniture specification, space planning and renderings within the healthcare, senior living and higher education market sectors.

Ms. Kreher is a recent graduate of Maryville University where she earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Interior Design.  While attending Maryville University, she served as an intern with Spellman Brady and studied abroad at the Santa Reparata International School of Art in Florence, Italy.

Spellman Brady & Company is an award-winning St. Louis–based interior design firm specializing in senior living, healthcare, and higher education environments.  For more information about Spellman Brady & Company, please visit

August 10, 2019

McCarthy Holdings Announces New CEO

Raymond Sedey

After a deliberate, multi-year succession process, McCarthy Holdings, Inc., one of America’s premier building companies, announced today the selection of Raymond J. Sedey, 42, as the firm’s next chief executive officer. On Jan. 1, 2020, Sedey will assume this position, currently held by Michael D. Bolen, who will continue in the role as chairman of the McCarthy board of directors.

“Today’s announcement concludes a comprehensive, deliberate and thoughtful evaluation and selection process. Ray Sedey is an experienced leader grown from within McCarthy. He brings a deep understanding of our company strategy and unique ownership culture, together with a strong commitment to delivering an exceptional experience for clients. I am pleased to have Ray succeed me in the CEO position.”

Sedey began with McCarthy in 2000 as a project engineer in the firm’s Southwest Region. He then moved through several core operations roles including superintendent, project manager and director, before being promoted to vice president, operations for the Las Vegas office in 2009. In 2012, Sedey was promoted to executive vice president responsible for leading business operations in Nevada, New Mexico and Colorado. In this role, he was instrumental in helping position McCarthy as a builder of choice in infrastructure, aviation, commercial, healthcare and entertainment projects, including successfully positioning the firm as a builder of choice for complex projects on the Las Vegas Strip.

In 2015, Sedey was selected to lead the McCarthy Texas Region as regional president. Under his leadership, McCarthy strengthened its position across the state of Texas with a focus on client results, safety, financial performance and talent management. In 2018, Sedey then led efforts to combine operations of the McCarthy Southeast Division and Texas Region to form a new Southern Region and assumed the position as Southern regional president.

Sedey is expected to maintain an office in Dallas as well as in the McCarthy Corporate Headquarters in St. Louis.

McCarthy Holdings, Inc. is the oldest privately held national construction company in the country – with more than 150 years spent collaborating with partners to solve complex building challenges on behalf of its clients. More information about the company is available online at or by following the company on FacebookTwitterLinkedIn and Instagram

Alan Bergfeld Joins Holland Construction Services As Director of Business Development

Alan Bergfeld

Mike Marchal, President of Holland Construction Services (Holland), is pleased to announce that Alan Bergfeld has joined the Holland team as Director of Business Development.

Alan comes to Holland with over 10 years of experience, most recently with a national design-build firm where he was responsible for a multi‐state region ranging from Missouri to Wyoming to Texas.

“Between the fantastic reputation and bright future of Holland, I’m extremely excited and honored to join the team,” Bergfeld said. “Their supportive and collaborative culture is a great place to have a successful career.”

Marchal added that “Alan brings a reputation for identifying and delivering clients’ objectives and his personality is the right fit for our culture. As part of Holland’s strategic initiative to expand our growth and presence in our local market, he will be an additional resource in cultivating relationships and identifying new opportunities.”

Alan was born and raised in St. Louis and a graduate of Truman State University. He currently resides in Des Peres, Missouri with his wife and two children.

Holland Construction Services is a fullservice construction management, general contracting, and design/build firm based in Swansea, Ill., guided by the principle of providing clients the best possible building experience on every project. For more information, visit Holland’s website at

Douglas McElvain has joined Rosemann & Associates, P.C.

Douglas McElvain

Douglas McElvain has joined Rosemann & Associates, P.C. St. Louis as project manager, bringing more than18 years of architectural expertise to his new role. His depth of experience and passion for design will be instrumental to Rosemann’s success as it continues to grow. Doug holds a Bachelor of Arts in Architecture from Washington University, St. Louis, Missouri.

KWK Architects/TKDA Design Team Transforms University of Minnesota’s Historic Pioneer Hall into Contemporary Space for Today’s Students

in Companies/News

The University of Minnesota’s 90-year-old Pioneer Hall opened its doors to incoming freshmen following a much-needed expansion and renovation. KWK Architects led the design effort on the project, partnered with architecture/engineering firm-of-record TKDA of St. Paul, MN.

The decision by the University’s Board of Regents in 2016 to preserve a significant amount of the residence hall’s signature exterior but demolish much of its interior offered a unique challenge to the project team.

The $104.5 million project increased the number of student beds from 693 on four floors to 756 on five floors while preserving the structure’s character-defining Georgian Revival-style exterior. The building now includes modernized community and recreational spaces as well as office and support spaces within a footprint that exceeds its original size by more than 40 percent. The project also expanded the dining hall from 285 seats to 850 seats, large enough to accommodate all residents within the UMN’s Superblock residential district.

Pioneer Hall, located at the southwest quadrant of the main residential neighborhood, was the on-campus home for many generations of students and holds a special place in the collective history of the university.

First opened in the early 1930s, Pioneer Hall was the university’s first dormitory for men. At that time, the building consisted of a series of houses with three- and four-room suites with separate bedrooms for each student and a common study and bathroom. The two back-to-back, C-shaped buildings formed two courtyards, with each house having its own exterior entrance off the courtyard. The main dining rooms were located in the basement level extending upward through the first floor.

Over time, the building evolved with a kitchen addition constructed in 1958 and a full-scale renovation in 1977 that introduced a corridor system to connect all houses, provided updated systems and added a small loading dock for residential life staff.

After many decades of service, Pioneer Hall was no longer meeting the needs of today’s students. The existing building lacked accessibility, with no elevator, multiple floor levels to navigate, exterior stoops with stairs at entry points, inaccessible bathrooms and inadequate circulation. The dining rooms were subterranean with the only views to the exterior from high clerestory windows. Major mechanical, plumbing and electrical systems needed improvements, and the building exterior components needed restoration.

“The corridors were narrow with jogs and offsets that resulted in difficult wayfinding and inadequate space to comfortably pass by others,” said Sara Koester, Principal at KWK Architects. “Many of the bedrooms were very small and cramped, and the bathrooms were outdated with aged fixtures and finishes. The building also lacked quality social and study spaces so vital for building community and fostering student academic and social success.”

Although the building had physical and functional deficiencies, Pioneer Hall had many excellent qualities and character-defining features, including C-shaped four-story wings, slate roofs, window fenestrations and round-arched passageways.

“Generations of students have lived in Pioneer Hall and have fond memories associated with the building and the university,” said Koester. “An important aspect of the renovation design was to respect the historical character of the original building and maintain a connection to the original hall.”

The goals for the renovation included:

  • Providing housing for 700-800 students – an increase over the existing 693 residents
  • Organizing double bedrooms in communities of 40 with community bathrooms
  • Increasing inclusiveness with fully accessibility and single-occupancy, unisex bathrooms within each community
  • Fostering student success with community-building and academic success spaces
  • Providing a new dining facility to serve the entire residential neighborhood of 2,900 students
  • Offering a food service option with an expanded variety of menu choices and distinct dining experiences

To achieve these goals, the renovation program called for increasing the total square footage from 177,000 SF to 257,000 SF. Demolition of the existing building was limited to the center construction and within the courtyards, with approximately 60% of the typical upper floors being retained.

“A major design challenge was to substantially increase the building area while maintaining the historical scale and sense of place,” said Koester. “The building façades have a strong presence on the streets and within the neighborhood, defining the edge and character. It was important to maintain these façades to continue the sense of place that the building provided.”

In order to minimize the impact of the additions, a new central, sub-basement level was built to accommodate the main mechanical, electrical, and telecom rooms; the new construction was concentrated in the courtyards and center to connect the building on all levels. The center addition linking the two C-shaped existing buildings extends up vertically for a full story instead of traditional attic space framing of the existing buildings and provides additional area while giving a massing hierarchy to the center linking element.

The new 42,000 SF dining facility has seating for 850 with eight venues arranged in a Main Street configuration. Fresh food will be prepared in salad/deli, grill, pasta, pizza, sauté, Mongolian stir-fry grill, home-cooking, and allergen-free stations, with emphasis on display cooking and variety of food choices. An on-site bakery offers fresh baked breads, cookies and donuts, and a breakfast venue offers traditional morning fare.

“Careful consideration was given in the design to ensure efficient flow of customers through the space at the all-you-care-to-eat facility,” said Koester.

The renovated residence hall features community-style living unit modules with a small group of residents sharing a community bathroom. These facilities are grouped with single-use private bathrooms to offer varying levels of privacy. Studies and lounges are provided for the communities, and a dedicated floor lounge allows for larger gatherings. Classroom, multipurpose, music practice, recreation rooms, large student kitchen, meditation and tech/business center provide a variety of spaces to gather, study or reflect, contributing to student academic success.

Sustainability was a major element of the project. Storm water management was a high priority for the university, given its close proximity to the Mississippi River. Large underground detention tanks are located on the north side of the site and connect to a district-wide stormwater system to serve the chilled water needs of a nearby campus medical facility.

Low-flow plumbing fixtures are used thorough the building. The project was designed to meet the Minnesota B3 sustainability standard and energy-efficient equipment was specified for all mechanical and food-service equipment and all lighting was energy-saving LED. The large, low roof over the dining area features a vegetated roof with native landscaping.

This is the third University of Minnesota student facility in recent years for the design architects from KWK and TKDA. They are currently beginning work together on a new residence tower and dining hall expansion at the Duluth campus. That project is slated to open to students in the fall of 2021.

“This project was so much more than providing room and board for freshmen,” said Tom Stoneburner, TKDA president and CEO. “The first-year university housing experience has a significant impact on students’ academic and social development. We are pleased to have been able to pay tribute to Pioneer Hall’s significant place in the University’s history through this important project.”

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. Areas of expertise include student housing and dining, and academic and science/technology spaces. For more information about KWK Architects, visit or contact Director of Marketing Cindy Hausler at

TKDA is an employee-owned provider of engineering, architecture, and planning services to a broad range of public and private markets. Our professionals in Minnesota and across the country are committed to delivering the highest levels of design to clients seeking single-source, integrated services. With more than 109 years of experience, TKDA is ranked among Engineering News-Record’s Top 500 Design Firms. For more information, visit

Construction Underway on $22 Million Dallas County South Government Center Designed by KAI

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Construction got underway on a new 73,000-square-foot Dallas County South Government Center (DCSGC) at the southern edge of Dallas County at Interstate 20 and South Polk Street. KAI Design served as the Architect-of-Record on the project, plus integrated its in-house MEP engineering group into the project and assisted with master planning the overall site for future growth.

The new two-story building will replace and consolidate three existing aging facilities under one roof and will house Dallas County’s Tax Office; County Constable; Sheriff’s Traffic Division, Dispatch and K-9 Unit; and two Justice of the Peace courts.

Design features of the new facility include a public walking trail around the property that will also be used by the Constable’s and Sheriff’s Academy for agility training, food truck parking adjacent to the detention pond, a weight room for the employees and a wellness room for nursing mothers. The project also included the design and integration of a 160-foot-tall radio communications tower, a kennel for the K-9 Unit, and property and evidence storage for the Sheriff’s Traffic Division.

The Sheriff’s dispatch area has been designed as an ICC-500 2015 Storm Shelter that will withstand winds of up to 200 MPH and remain operational during severe weather. This facility will also serve as a back-up dispatch center for adjacent municipalities.

“We leveraged our storm shelter design experience and worked collaboratively with our structural engineering consultant to bring forth an innovative design,” said Derwin Broughton, AIA, NCARB, Principal – Business Development at KAI.

The facility is designed to achieve a LEED v4 Silver Certification. Construction of the facility is expected to be completed in December 2020.

KAI Enterprises is a national design and build firm providing delivery-oriented building solutions with a diverse portfolio of experience, in-house multi-discipline professionals, and expertise in both design and construction delivery. Founded in 1980, KAI has grown into one of the largest minority-owned firms in the AEC industry. To learn more about KAI, visit

Western Specialty Contractors Offers Tips on Protecting Parking Structures from Damage During Winter

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Chemical deicers and snow plows are commonly used in winter to eliminate hazardous ice and snow from parking decks and structures. While deicers are doing their job melting away snow and ice, some may actually be corroding the parking structure’s concrete and reinforcing steel, and some snow removal techniques may actually be doing more damage than good.

Western Specialty Contractors, experts in parking garage restoration and maintenance, offers several tips to minimize unnecessary damage to parking structures during the winter months, and keep drivers safe.

Snow Removal Tips

  • Clearly mark expansion joints in a way that will be visible to the equipment operator when the deck is covered with snow.
  • Establish a snow removal pattern so that the plow blade approaches expansion joints, control joints and tee to tee joints at an angle no greater than 75 degrees.
  • Equip snow plow blades and bucket loaders with shoes or rubber guards that prevent direct contact with the deck surface.
  • Do not pile snow on the deck surface. Piles of snow can exceed the rated load capacity and cause cracking in the concrete deck surface.

Deicing/Salting Tips

Using chemical deicers to control ice and snow buildup is common. However, these chemicals can have a negative effect on concrete and reinforcing steel and should be used sparingly. There are several different types of deicers on the market that can be used, however, only those approved by the American Concrete Institute are recommended.

  • Sodium Chloride – (road salt, table salt) This is the most common used salt deicer. It has little effect on concrete, but promotes corrosion in reinforcing steel and other metals. Use of this type of deicer is NOT recommended.
  • Calcium Chloride – This is a major ingredient in most commercial deicers. It has little effect on concrete, but promotes corrosion in reinforcing steel and other metals. Use of this type of deicer is NOT recommended.
  • Ammonium Nitrate or Ammonium Sulfate – Use of this deicer will lead to serious concrete deterioration due to its direct chemical attack on reinforcing steel. Use of this type of deicer is NOT recommended.
  • Calcium Magnesium Acetate (CMA) – The effects of this deicer are similar to salt, but it requires more time to melt ice. It has no adverse effects on concrete or steel reinforcement. If a deicer is required, a CMA is recommended.

It is important to minimize the amount of deicing chemical applied during the first two years of the concrete being installed. During this time, the concrete has an increased permeability which can allow the deicing chemicals to migrate into the concrete more rapidly. As concrete ages and cures, it will become less permeable and chemicals will not penetrate as easily.

It is also important to remember that the use of deicing chemicals in general are not recommended. The safest way to remove ice and snow is to use a plow. Sand can also be used to increase tire traction on the deck, but be sure to protect the drainage system when washing down the deck after its use.

Family-owned and operated for over 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

Geotechnology Launches New Mining and Underground Development Consultation Services

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Long associated with applied earth, environmental and geotechnical engineering and construction services “from the ground up,” Geotechnology is now assisting clients with mining and underground development consultation and inspection services.

These new “ground down” services identify, rectify and/or mitigate issues involving mines, tunnels, caves, and karst, and also assist with new development opportunities within and above areas.

For more than 35 years, Geotechnology’s geotechnical professionals have used their geological and engineering experience to advise on the design of buildings and structural foundations that are impacted by soil, rock, groundwater, seismicity, and other factors. With the recent addition of a senior engineer and geologist with almost 20 years of experience in subsurface investigation and remediation, Geotechnology is extending its suite of professional services to include subterranean consultation services.

“There are vast opportunities that can be pursued underground,” said Joel Weinhold, P.E., Regional Manager for Geotechnology’s Central Region. “With proper design and construction, we can help repurpose obsolete mines, karst and other underground areas for private or public use. We are very pleased that we can contribute to sustainable projects that could include surface and subsurface development, new resource exploration, renewable energy, farming or other commercial and recreational activities.”

It takes a unique skill set and experience to understand, and practically address, geotechnical concerns associated with underground development. Caves, man-made tunnels and mines have unique qualities and pose unique challenges. There are many regions in the U.S. where mines and shafts exist but are not mapped. Likewise, much of the country is affected by karst, where erosion has produced fissures, sinkholes, caverns and underground streams. To avoid instability issues, geological and geotechnical conditions should be explored. This requires knowledge about lithology, strength, bedding, jointing, foliation, fractures, hydrogeology and chemical components.

Geotechnology’s new mining and underground development consultation services utilize state-of-the-art equipment such as borehole cameras to determine if there are anomalies, and dilatometers for stress and stability testing. Geotechnology owns its own equipment and testing laboratories, so projects can progress efficiently with lower costs.

By combining innovation and skill, Geotechnology can provide cost-effective solutions for developers, government agencies, public and private industrial institutions, architectural and engineering firms and construction companies who seek safe, economical, and environmentally sound underground construction services.

Established in 1984, Geotechnology, Inc. is a professional corporation offering a comprehensive range of consulting services in applied earth and environmental sciences, including geophysics, underground consulting services, geotechnical and environmental engineering, materials testing and drilling. Geotechnology has provided expertise on thousands of major construction projects in the Midwest and Mid-South regions, and is ranked in ENR’s Top 500 Design Firms. The company is headquartered in St. Louis, Missouri, and has ten offices in Missouri, Illinois, Kansas, Ohio, Kentucky, Tennessee, Mississippi and Arkansas. For more information, visit

Kadean Selected To Construct New $17.7 Million Warehouse And Distribution Facility At KCI Intermodal Businesscentre

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Kadean Construction has been awarded a $17.7 million contract by developer Trammell Crow Company to construct a 542,640 square foot warehouse/distribution building known as LogisticsCentre V at KCI Intermodal BusinessCentre.  LogisticsCentre V will be a modern, cross dock warehouse/distribution facility with three separate storefront entrances for multiple tenants that incorporates sustainable design and construction features.  Kadean Construction previously built LogisticsCentre II, III and IV at the 687-acre distribution and logistics park adjacent to Kansas City International Airport, and recently completed the tenant build-out of the 202,800 square foot LogisticsCentre III for Trammell Crow Company.

“Like the other facilities we’ve built in the business park, LogisticsCentre V will have a structural steel frame, concrete tilt-up walls, a seven-inch thick reinforced concrete floor and a 36-foot clear height ceiling,” said Kadean Vice President Austin Christensen.  “This building will also feature 98 dock positions, with 132 tractor and 324 car parking stalls.  Earlier this year, we completed infrastructure work for this site, so we are pleased to be awarded the contract to construct LogisticsCentre V.”

Kadean will provide general contracting services for LogisticsCentre V. Construction is scheduled to be completed in March 2020.  The project architect is M+H Architects, and civil engineering is being provided by Stock & Associates.

Kadean began operations in Kansas City in 2015 and opened an office at 1821 McGee in the downtown Crossroads area in January 2018.   Since entering this market, Kadean has completed 15 projects exceeding $75 million in total revenue including more than 1.5 million square feet of industrial buildings at the KCI Intermodal BusinessCentre.  Kadean has also built more than 2.8 million square feet of warehouse/distribution facilities in the St. Louis area.

Kadean Construction is a rapidly growing, 25-year-old commercial construction company with 44 employees and an annual revenue of more than $75 million.  Kadean specializes in pre-construction, design-build, construction management and general contracting services at the local, regional and national level in the industrial & manufacturing, life sciences, healthcare, commercial and multi-family market segments.

5300 Centre Apartments in St. Peters, Mo Debuts As Lifestyle Catalyst for the Newly Named Town Centre

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The St. Peters Town Centre is blossoming with the debut of 5300 Centre Apartments – a 265-unit new luxury apartment community.  Developed by Propper Construction Services5300 Centre is an amenity-rich, four-story, two-building apartment community at Mexico Road and St. Peters Centre Boulevard.  It fully capitalizes on its proximity to the St. Peters City Centre Park and its 78 acres of green space, athletic fields, playgrounds, picnic areas, the Veterans MemorialArts Centre and St. Peters Rec-Plex.  A grand opening celebration will be held from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 19, 2019.

“With its resort-like qualities, 5300 Centre is a catalyst for additional retail, restaurant, residential and lifestyle-oriented mixed-use developments that will strengthen and define the Town Centre’s identity,” said Julie Powers, St. Peters director of planning, community and economic development.  Powers noted that 5300 Centre was also fortifying the biking and walk in trails in the Town Centre.

Among 5300 Centre’s prime features are two expansive rooftop garden areas. One is designed for recreation, including bocce ball and other games, a dog park and fun gatherings.  The other is designed for resident community gardens, quiet respite with hammocks and outdoor yoga classes.

Other amenities include:

  • A plaza swimming pool with an expansive sun deck featuring a waterfall and fountains. Additional plaza pool features include a hot tub, outdoor multi-screened televisions, kitchen and grilling stations;
  • A scenic covered rooftop lounge with a massive fireplace and multiple televisions;
  • A high endurance fitness center with on line classes and a separate yoga studio;
  • An expansive lobby ornamented with a water and fire feature with multiple gathering spots served by a premium coffee bar and kitchen space for entertaining guests;
  • Ample covered parking options including a covered parking structure and carports;
  • Electric vehicle charging stations;
  • Bicycle storage and repair shop;
  • Resident business center; and
  • Resident storage.

The apartment community is infused with technology with WiFi in all common and communal spaces and streaming music and TVs with touch screen controls in all communal spaces.  It also includes a “social media wall” above resident mail boxes with six video screens detailing information on events in St. Peters, local restaurant specials, apartment social events and helpful information on lifestyle needs.  The building features a state-of-the-art security system with secured control access entries throughout and security cameras.

5300 Centre offers fully furnished or unfurnished units.  The well-appointed, open-concept spaces feature nine-foot ceilings with select apartments and townhomes with 22-foot vaulted ceilings, wood laminate flooring, full kitchens with luxury slate appliances, quartz countertops, washers and dryers and more.  Each apartment thermostat can be controlled by a cell phone app.

5300 Centre features 162 one-bedroom units, 96 two-bedroom units, two three-

bedroom units and five studio apartments.  Suites with private balconies are also available.  In addition, a guest rental suite is available. Rents range from $920 for studio units up to $2,585 for three-bedroom suites.  For leasing information, call 636-922-9539 or visit the web site at  2B Residential is the management and leasing company.  The firm was named the 2018 and 2016 Property Management Company of the Year by the St. Louis Apartment Association.

Founded in 2014, Propper Construction Services is an active builder, construction manager and real estate developer in Missouri and Illinois.  Learn more at

Knoebel Construction completes The Learning Experience in St. Peters, MO

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The location is the first to be built to a new design prototype


The Learning Experience early childhood center in St. Peters, MO is complete and open, with Knoebel Construction serving as the general contractor. This newly built location is the first to be built to the brand’s new design prototype. The 10,000-square-foot facility features ten, colorful classrooms; a spacious outdoor, fenced play area with soft turf; kitchen; offices; reception area; and an interactive, whimsical classroom that features a miniature Main Street, USA. The architect was CASCO + R|5.

The design goal of The Learning Experience’s purpose-built centers is to create an environment where children feel comfortable, safe and ready to learn. Additional facility features include secure, private access; rounded corners in hallways and classrooms; and bathrooms designed for age-appropriate use.

The Learning Experience in St. Peters will open this Fall. One of the fastest-growing childcare franchises in the United States, 300 The Learning Experience early education centers are open or under development.

Knoebel Construction, Inc. is a national general contractor specializing in retail center, multi-use, restaurant, grocery, healthcare and retail store construction. Projects range from major regional shopping centers to local restaurants. For more information, visit or call (636) 326-4100.

Helmkamp Restructures Management Team for Sustainable Growth

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In its 81 years of business, Helmkamp has focused on building relationships with clients built on trust, quality, integrity and safety leadership.  This focus has only grown stronger as they continue to thrive under the new ownership of Rob Johnes, President of Helmkamp since 2012, who acquired the company from the family’s third generation owner in early 2018.  However, a hard look at the current structure of the organization as it continues to grow is always a worthwhile exercise.

Johnes recently formed an internal leadership team whose purpose was to develop future company plans.  In particular, to discuss and investigate several company structures that would allow Helmkamp to grow while emphasizing what has made them successful to date.  The organization of the management team was a standout action item among these preparations for sustainable growth.

Joe Stang

Joe Stange, formerly Director of Industrial Construction, will now adopt the role of Director of Operations.  Stange will ensure all jobs are executed to Helmkamp standards, manage manpower and equipment to support field operations and implement training to help continually develop project management and superintendent staff.

Brian Bechard

Brian Bechard, formerly a Senior Project Manager on the team, has been promoted to Director of Pre-Construction.  Bechard will oversee the marketing, business development and estimating efforts as they align to growth goals.  This role will also allow someone with direct project management experience to work with new and existing clients on project solutions while strengthening relationships.

While Helmkamp is committed to being the area’s builder of choice and focusing on deep customer relationships, this restructuring and plan for growth was also outlined to allow further investment in its employees, equipment, technology and paths for charitable giving.

Since 1938, Helmkamp Construction Co. has built relationships based on quality, integrity and safety leadership.  Helmkamp is the builder of choice for the repeat, professional buyer of construction in Industrial, Building and Life Science markets.  To learn more, visit

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