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Knoebel Construction Doubles Office Space With Move To Chesterfield, Mo

in Companies/News

Knoebel Construction, Inc., a full-service general contractor specializing in retail development, restaurant, grocery and retail construction nationwide, has moved its headquarters from Fenton, MO, to Chesterfield, MO, in St. Louis County. The new location at 18333 Wings Corporate Dr. more than doubles Knoebel Construction’s space to 9,688 square feet.

Mathew Mabie

“Chesterfield Valley is a great central location to service our local clients, and being adjacent to Chesterfield Airport is very convenient for visits by our national roster of clients,” said Matthew Mabie, president of Knoebel Construction. “Chesterfield also is an area of high growth and development in our specialty area of retail shopping centers and restaurants.”

The new headquarters features 18 offices organized into two wings for project management and accounting/admin staff, three conference rooms, a team engagement area, a full kitchen and 2,500 square feet of warehouse space. The purchasing agent was Daniel Hayes at NAI Desco.

Keith Snider

Owners Matthew Mabie and Keith Snider, former employees of Knoebel Construction, purchased the company in 2012. Today, Knoebel Construction has expanded nationwide, providing full-service development, contracting and construction management services to real estate development firms, independent restaurant and retail owners, and retailers.

Knoebel Construction, Inc. is a national general contractor specializing in retail development, restaurant, grocery and retail construction.

BOMA St. Louis Announces New Officers for 2017

in Associations/News

The Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA) of Metropolitan St. Louis is pleased to announce its new Officers for the 2017 term:

Melissa Wolf

Melissa Wolff, President, Director of Property Management Services, Newmark Grubb Zimmer



Michelle Biedermann

Michelle Biedermann, Vice President, Real Estate Manager, CBRE Asset Services



Patrick Shaw

Patrick Shaw, Treasurer, Associate Vice President, Director of Engineering & Maintenance, Cushman Wakefield


BOMA’s mission is to represent and promote the interests of the commercial real estate industry through effective leadership, advocacy, exchange of information, and professional development. BOMA St. Louis has more than 450 members whose companies own, manage, lease and service the metropolitan real estate community. The St. Louis office market contributes almost $2 billion to the local economy, accounts for over $500,000,000 in taxable personal earnings, supports almost 14,000 jobs and generates $112,000,000 in real estate taxes.

Pace Properties Sells The Boulevard-St. Louis in Richmond Heights, Mo.

in Companies/Homepage Primary/News

Edwards Realty Company and Condor Partners have formed a joint venture partnership to complete the purchase of The Boulevard St. Louis, a 200,000 square foot five-acre retail, luxury apartment and office enclave in Richmond Heights across from the St. Louis Galleria. The sale included the 4.8 acres south of the commercial development. Terms of the sale were not disclosed.

Edwards Realty Company is a privately held real estate investment and development firm based in Orland Park, Illinois and led by Edward Hassan, founding partner, and Ramzi Hassan, partner. Edwards Realty Company has over 25 years experience in retail, residential and mixed-use management and development and controls a $65 million commercial property portfolio. Sol Barket, formerly of St. Louis, heads Condor Partners. Barket as founding partner of Condor and with his prior company, Centrum Properties, has developed many retail and mixed-use projects from coast to coast including Creve Coeur Pavilion in St. Louis.

Since 2004 The Boulevard has been known as the premier lifestyle development in the St. Louis metropolitan area and is home to Missouri’s first Crate and Barrel store and Soft Surroundings’ first Missouri location, restaurants Maggiano’s Little Italy and P.F. Chang’s China Bistro, along with Allegro at The Boulevard, 74 luxury residential apartments and a professional office complex. Page 2 of 2 The Boulevard St. Louis

“The purchase of The Boulevard is part of our strategy to enhance and add value to a mixed-use destination that is highly regarded as the epicenter of the market.,” said Edwards Realty Partner Ramzi Hassan. “The Boulevard is a great brand with tremendous growth and development potential, and we intend to implement strategies to unlock that potential immediately.”

Edwards and Condor are planning to advance the second phase to include an exciting mix of retail, restaurants, entertainment, office and residential uses that will give the residents and visitors of greater St. Louis a one-of-a kind experience where they can live, shop, dine and play. Edwards Realty Co. will oversee management and operations of the property. The marketing and leasing responsibilities for phase two will be shared between Mid-America Asset Management Company, a Chicago based retail real estate organization, and Pace Properties. Further announcements regarding The Boulevard will be forthcoming in the very near future.

The Boulevard St. Louis is located at Brentwood Boulevard & Galleria Parkway in Richmond Heights, MO 63117.

DOE Finalizes New Efficiency Standards for Commercial Boilers

in News

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) finalized a new energy efficiency standard for “packaged boilers” on Wednesday.

Nearly a quarter of the commercial floor space in the United States is heated by packaged boilers and given that space heating is by far the biggest energy user in commercial buildings (see red wedge in picture below), the standard is supposed to yield significant cost and energy savings.

Commercial packaged boilers, which are also found in multifamily buildings and small industrial facilities, are powered by oil or natural gas and generally serve buildings and facilities with central distribution systems that circulate the steam or hot water from the boiler to other parts of the building. These boilers can fit in tight spaces and be installed relatively quickly.

The packaged boiler energy efficiency standard was one of five released by DOE on Wednesday.  Others were announced for pool pumps, portable air conditioners, uninterruptible power supplies (battery backup systems that keep electronics running when the power goes out or falters); and walk-in coolers and freezers. All were released as part of a federal standards program under the National Appliance Energy Conservation Act of 1987, which was signed into law by President Reagan.

The DOE estimates that the packaged boiler standard will save 0.27 quadrillion BTU (quads) of energy once it goes into effect in 2019, enough to heat all the natural gas-heated homes in New England for a year and a half, and save consumers up to about $2 billion after accounting for the cost of the new equipment.  The DOE estimates the new standards will save consumers between $200 (for a small gas-fired steam boiler) and $36,000 (for a large oil-fired boiler), over the life of the boilers with a payback of 10.1 years and 2.8 years, respectively. The typical lifetime of a packaged boiler is 25  years.

The DOE expects the standard will reduce the energy use of commercial packaged boilers by between 2 and 6 percent compared to the current standard and will avoid roughly 16 million metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions over the next 30 years, as much carbon pollution as is emitted by three million cars in a year.

The new rule raises the required boiler efficiency from 80 percent to between 81 to 88 percent.  They are technology neutral, so manufacturers have control over how they meet the targets.

Construction Activity Drops After Election

in News/Uncategorized

The St. Louis area saw a significant slowing in construction activity as the end of the year approached. According to Dodge Data & Analytics, construction activity in nonresidential building slipped 72 percent in November from the same month a year earlier, construction activity in the residential sector fell 52 percent.  (All dollar amounts shown in thousands.)

                                  2016             2015       Change

Nonresidential         $61,161      $220,330      – 72%

Residential             $116896      $224,404      – 52%

TOTAL                  $178,027      $464,734      – 62%

The losses in November pulled down numbers for the year.  In the first 11 months of 2016, nonresidential construction was off 26 percent compared to 2015, while residential construction was up six percent. As a result, total building construction was down 11 percent on the year. (All dollar amounts shown in thousands.)

                                  2016             2015       Change

Nonresidential    $1,463,516   $1,975,477      – 26%

Residential         $1,920,042   $1,808,473       +6%

TOTAL               $3,383,558   $3,783,950      – 11%

The residential category consists of both single family and multifamily housing. The nonresidential category consists of everything else.

Trump Administration Already Creating More Business-Friendly Legal Environment

in News

By Adam Doerr, Jackson Lewis P.C.

By sunrise on November 9, 2016, business professionals and lawyers across the country were scrambling to re-write their stories on how the next president will impact labor and employment laws. The consensus was clear: Mr. Trump’s administration will be more business-friendly than President Obama’s was (or Hillary Clinton’s would likely have been). But nobody knew exactly what that meant.

Over the past couple months, and with inauguration day fast approaching, we have begun to see just how Mr. Trump’s administration is shifting the legal landscape back in favor of businesses. While Mr. Trump is clearly targeting banking, health care, energy and immigration laws and regulations, his administration will also significantly impact labor and employment laws and regulations.

National Labor Relations Board

In recent years, labor and employment law attorneys got used to advising business clients that the Obama Administration was one of the most union-friendly in decades, as the National Labor Relations Board (“NLRB” or “Board”) went to great lengths to protect employees’ rights to unionize and engage in other “concerted activity.”

The tides are shifting. Dramatically.

Over the next year, Mr. Trump will get to appoint two members to the National Labor Relations Board, which currently enjoys a 2-1 Democratic (and very pro-union) majority. That shift, to a 3-2 Republican (and likely very pro-business) majority, will allow the Board to revisit, and ultimately undo, a wide range of union-friendly issues and decisions, including the:

  1. Illegality of class action waivers, which makes it harder for businesses to mitigate future costly litigation through contractual settlements and employment agreements;
  1. Expanded “joint employer” test, which allows the NLRB to hold one employer liable for the conduct of a separate employer so long as the putative “joint employer” has even an indirect right to control the workers’ terms and conditions of employment;
  1. Narrowing employers’ ability to alter the scope of a union’s requested bargaining unit, allowing unions to carve out and focus on “micro-units;” and
  1. Expanding the scope of “protected concerted activity” by striking down “overly broad” work rules and policies, including those requiring (a) employees to be professional in the workplace, (b) confidentiality of company information and investigations, and (c) employee access to company resources for union-related activity, among others.

Although it will take some time for these changes to take effect, Mr. Trump’s NLRB will be at least as business-friendly as the current Board has been labor-friendly.

Department of Labor

Andrew Pudzer

In addition, Mr. Trump’s U.S. Department of Labor (“DOL”) in general will be far more business-friendly than President Obama’s.

To start, Mr. Trump appointed Andrew Pudzer, CEO of the parent company of Carl’s Jr. and Hardees fast-food restaurants, to head the DOL as Secretary of Labor. Mr. Pudzer will undoubtedly slam on the breaks and reverse the course that current Secretary Perez has taken.

Mr. Pudzer has lambasted “government mandate[s]” that “mak[e] labor much more expensive,” including mandatory paid family leave, minimum-hours legislation, and increasing minimum wages, among others. Mr. Pudzer is critical of “business-burdening labor regulations” and calls for a “freer market…to improve worker’s lives.” Speaking specifically of unions, Mr. Pudzer noted “[b]usinesses create jobs; labor unions do not. To the contrary, labor unions often discourage businesses from creating jobs…by increasing the cost of labor.”

As Secretary of Labor, Mr. Pudzer will enjoy significant control over the DOL, and will be primarily charged with enforcing federal workplace laws.

Already, President Obama’s new overtime rules are in grave danger. Those rules would have about doubled the minimum salary threshold an employee must earn before being able to be deemed “exempt” from receiving overtime pay. But right before they were to take effect, a federal court in Texas struck down the rules as an unlawful attempt to legislate from the executive branch. Although litigation continues over that decision, the court of appeals will not likely be able to issue a ruling before Mr. Pudzer’s DOL takes over, at which point it could (and probably would) drop the appeal entirely, letting the lower court’s blocking of the new overtime rules stand.

Mr. Pudzer’s DOL may also start rolling back more liberal policies through the issuance of “opinion letters,” which do not have the force of law, but provide persuasive input from the agency charged with overseeing and enforcing labor laws, rules and regulations regarding their scope and application.

Business is Looking Up

Mr. Trump has built his fortune and fame on being a businessman. He is now filling his Cabinet with fellow business executives, from the Secretary of State (Rex Tillerson, CEO of Exxon Mobil) to Small Business Association (Linda McMahon, WWE co-founder). Through his own business-oriented policies, executive actions, and Cabinet appointees, businesses have reason to be optimistic about the next four years.

About Adam Doerr

Adam Doerr is an Associate at Jackson Lewis P.C.’s St. Louis office where he advises and represents management on workplace law matters and in litigation.  Jackson Lewis P.C. is dedicated to representing management exclusively in workplace law. With 800 attorneys practicing in major locations throughout the U.S. and Puerto Rico, Jackson Lewis is a leader in educating employers about the laws of equal opportunity and, as a firm, understands the importance of having a workforce that reflects the various communities it serves.  Adam may be reached at 314-827-3945 or

Construction is on the Rise, but Labor Issues Cause Concern

in Companies/News

By Chris Daues, CPA 

When you think of the economy, how do you think it is doing? Everyone, from Wall Street to your neighbor, seems to have an opinion. Specifically relating to the construction industry, here are the facts so you can form your own opinion.

National Construction Spending 

Since 2011, construction spending in the U.S. has steadily increased to approximately $1.2 trillion in 2015, which is a 9.6% increase from 2014 to 2015.

Specifically, private (portion of the economy controlled by private individuals or organizations) construction spending has increased 11.4% from 2014 into 2015, while public (portion of the economy controlled by the government) construction spending only increased 4.4%.

In a March 2016 press release from the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC), a trade association in the U.S. construction industry, construction spending for the rolling 12 months in January 2016 totaled $1.14 trillion, which is an approximate 3.0% increase from the rolling 12-month total in December 2015.

Spending on multi-family residential construction increased 2.6%, private non-residential construction increased 1.0%, and public construction increased 4.5% from December 2015 to January 2016.

National Employment

While spending has increased to an eight-year high in 2015, employment in construction-related jobs has not surpassed pre-recession (2008) levels as demonstrated by the graph below, which has caused a labor shortage in the industry.

However, unemployment rates within the construction industry have decreased to an eight-year low of 7.5% in 2015. So you may be asking yourself, how do we have an employment shortage if the unemployment rate within the industry is so low?

This is an indicator that while the majority of those individuals in the industry are working, there is still a significant number of workers that left the industry during the recession and have not yet or may not return.

State and Metro Employment

On a state-by-state basis, several states have seen double-digit increases in construction employment from January 2015 to January 2016, including Nevada (10.0%), Hawaii (16.0%) and Rhode Island (13.0%).

Additionally, other states showed strong employment increases like Colorado (5.0%), California (7.0%) and Tennessee (9.0%). There were several states, including Alaska (-9.0%), Kansas (-2.0%) and Wyoming (-5.0%), that had decreases in employment over the same time period.

From a metro level, several metro areas have seen double digit increases in employment from January 2015 to January 2016 including Sante Fe, NM (16.0%), Miami, FL (13.0%) and Las Vegas, NV (11.0%).

St. Louis, MO (5.0%), Kansas City, MO (8.0%), Nashville, TN (9.0%) and Boulder, CO (8.0%) were among other metros that also showed strong employment increases.

There were several metros, including Albuquerque, NM (-3.0%), Cheyenne, WY (-8.0%) and Tuscan, AZ (-1.0%), that had decreases in employment over that same time period.

Unemployment by Position

The AGC surveyed its members in September 2015 and received over 1,350 responses. Of the responses, 59.0% had total annual revenue of less than $50 million.

Companies were asked what their most difficult positions were to fill. For hourly employees, they responded that carpenters, sheet metal installers, concrete workers and electricians were the most difficult positions to fill. For salaried employees, project managers, estimators and engineers were the most difficult to fill.

Offsetting Workforce Shortages

The aforementioned survey summarized how companies are compensating for the worker shortage. Primarily, companies are increasing base pay and providing incentives and bonuses in response to the labor shortage.

In addition to increasing compensation, companies are also using more subcontractors and staffing agencies. While companies are discovering ways to mitigate the labor shortage issue, they face the potential risk of relying on workers unfamiliar with the proper safety procedures and policies at a higher cost.

Additionally, per the published 2015 Workforce Development Plan, the AGC is working at the federal level on several issues to revive the labor force in the construction industry.

Specifically, efforts to reform and reinvigorate the Perkins Act are being made so there is a new emphasis on increased funding and more flexibility for school officials to teach in-demand skills sets.

The plan outlines, among several initiatives, increased trade related courses being offered to high school students through the community college system and immigration reform.

Material Costs

Each month, the AGC publishes data summarizing the producer price index (PPI) for key construction related outputs. The PPI measures the average changes in prices received by domestic producers for their output.

The PPI of several key raw materials for the construction industry have increased marginally over a 12-month period from January 2015 to January 2016 including flat glass (5.9%), cement (5.6%) and gravel/crushed stone (5.7%).

However, other key components have seen significant declines including diesel fuel (-34.6%), steel mill products (-19.2%) and copper and brass mill shapes (-17.6%).

While the industry saw slight increases in some key components, the drastic decreases in other key components should help mitigate the increases in wages being offered due to the labor shortage.

Key Client Metrics

Upon examining data from RubinBrown’s client base of general contractors, subcontractors and specialty contractors in Colorado, Kansas, Missouri and Illinois, we noted several trends:

For contractors with more than $100 million in annual revenue, average gross profit decreased from 13.0% in 2014 to 12.2% in 2015

For contractors with less than $100 million in annual revenue, average gross profit decreased from 19.1% in 2014 to 18.8% in 2015

On average for all clients, backlog increased on average 40.0% from 2014 to 2015

Economic Forecast

In looking at the crystal ball, the next two years appear to get even brighter from a spending standpoint. Ken Simonson, the Chief Economist of AGC of America, estimates that total construction related spending in the U.S. will increase 6.0 – 9.0% in 2016 and another 5.0 – 7.0% in 2017.

Specifically, he estimates that both private residential and private non-residential will increase 5.0 – 10.0 % and 5.0 – 8.0% in 2016 and 2017, respectively.

Simonson further estimates that multi-family residential spending will increase 8.0 –12.0 % in 2016 while single family residential spending will only increase 6.0 – 9.0%. He cited that multi-family growth is primarily driven by low vacancies and the increasing popularity of the urban areas.

Big Picture

Overall, the construction industry is demonstrating several positive signs. However, the positive momentum will be slowed if the labor shortage is not alleviated in the near future.

Full story here:


RubinBrown’s Construction Services Group

We provide services to general contractors, specialty subcontractors and related companies in the construction industry.

Ken Van Bree, CPA, CGMA — St. LouisPartner-In-Charge

Construction Services Group, 314.290.3429,

Matt Beerbower, CPA — Denver, Partner & Vice Chair

Construction Services Group, 303.952.1252,

Mark Jansen, CPA, CGMA — St. Louis, Partner & Vice Chair

Construction Services Group, 314.290.3208,

Bryan Hinton, CPA — Nashville, Partner

Construction Services Group, 615.685.0391,

 Chris Daues, CPA — Denver, Manager

Construction Services Group, 303.952.1276,

Zach Fritz, CPA — Kansas City, Manager

Construction Services Group, 913.499.4416,

Graham Ryan, CPA — Kansas City, Manager

Construction Services Group, 913.499.4441,

Roeslein & Associates Donates $50,000 to BackStoppers

in Companies/News

Contribution in Memory of Blake Snyder and Other Police Officers Killed in the Line of Duty

Roeslein & Associates, Inc. recently presented The BackStoppers organization with a check for $50,000 in memory of Officer Blake Snyder and other police officers who have fallen in the line of duty.Ron Battelle, Executive Director of The BackStoppers and former St. Louis County Police Chief, received the contribution during a presentation at Roeslein & Associates headquarters December 14, 2016.

The BackStoppers is an organization that provides needed financial assistance and support to the spouses and dependent children of all police officers, firefighters, volunteer firefighters, and publicly-funded paramedics and EMTs in our coverage area who have lost their lives or suffered a catastrophic injury performing their duty.

“It is an honor and privilege to help these families. It is also an honor and privilege to accept this contribution from Rudi and the company. We will be eternally grateful for what you have done here,” Battelle said. “We deeply, deeply appreciate this donation.”

Owner of Roeslein & Associates, Rudi Roeslein, addressed the company during this donation ceremony stating, “For those whom do not know, Jeremy Quate of our Red Bud facility attended training at the Police Academy with Office Blake Snyder. Shortly after Officer Snyder’s passing, Jeremy reached out to me asking if I was aware of The BackStoppers program. I already knew I wanted to help in whatever way possible and this confirmed that Roeslein & Associates would be taking action.” Mr. Roeslein continued on by saying, “As a company in the Lindbergh school district and a significant contributor to this community I think it is our duty to show support for our police. I thank them for their continued service and hope that this contribution will help to make a difference.”

The BackStoppers Organization will use this donation to assist Elizabeth Snyder, wife of fallen Officer Blake Snyder, on putting a down payment on a new home for her and her family. The BackStoppers organization continues to support the surviving spouse and all dependent children until they reach age 21 or complete their post-secondary education. The BackStoppers currently supports 81 families with 66 dependent children and has supported 160 families since 1959 in its inception.

Roeslein & Associates was founded in 1990, specializing in engineering, modular fabrication and construction services.

Above: Pictured left to right: Officer Schroeder, Deputy Chief Ken Cox, Lieutenant Blake, Rudi Roeslein, Ron Battelle, Sergeant Absolon, Jeremy Quate and Officer Weinman.


$500 Million In Local Public And Utility Construction Project Opportunities To Be Showcased At 2017 Investment In Infrastructure Expo

in News

More than $500 million in public and utility infrastructure construction projects to be awarded to contractors in 2017 will be showcased by the purchasers of these projects at the 2017 Investment in Infrastructure Expo to be held February 28, 2017 at the St. Charles Convention Center.  Hosted by the SITE Improvement Association, the Expo will feature presentations of upcoming infrastructure projects by the Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT), Metropolitan Sewer District (MSD), Ameren Missouri, Spire (formerly Laclede Gas), St. Louis County, St. Charles County, Jefferson County, Great Rivers Greenway and more.  In addition, the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis will present its annual economic forecast for the construction industry in the St. Louis region and the Midwest.

“This Expo will be the single best opportunity for contractors and others to really see what the local construction market will look like for their company in 2017 and beyond,” said Terry Briggs, Executive Director of SITE.  “By bringing all these major purchasers of infrastructure construction projects together in the same place, contractors can learn the details about bidding opportunities, meet with the purchasers of these projects and network with other infrastructure sector contractors and suppliers in a half day of outstanding business development activities.  This is much more comprehensive than any business expo events we have hosted in the past, and we are expecting well over 500 attendees, sponsors and presenters.”

Individual tickets cost $30.  Sponsorship opportunities are also available for equipment dealers and suppliers, as well as for construction, architecture, engineering and other professional services firms.  There will be 70 booths in the Sponsor Showcase area at the Expo, and a variety of sponsorship packages are available.  Drinks and appetizers will also be available to all attendees as part of the admission price.

For more information, click here:

SITE is an independent construction contractor group representing more than 165 contractors and businesses primarily in the concrete, earthmoving, landscaping, asphalt paving, highway/bridge, sewer/utility and specialty construction segments.

In Memoriam George L. Hensley, Jr.

in News/People

George Hensley, Jr., President of Hensley Construction, Inc., lost his courageous battle with cancer on Sunday, December 18.

A visitation was held on Wednesday, December 21 from 4:00 pm to 8:00 pm at Bopp Chapel, Kirkwood, MO.  A memorial service will be held on December 22 at 1 pm at St. Peter’s Catholic Church, 243 W. Argonne Drive, Kirkwood, MO  63122, (314) 966-8600.

In lieu of flowers, Hensley Construction has designated, a not-for-profit in support of cancer research, for memorial contributions,  or The Boys & Girls Club of St. Louis, Herbert Hoover campus



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