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Electrical Connection Sponsors (and Brightens!) the St. Louis Cardinals

in Associations/News

The St. Louis Cardinals launched its 2019 season with the Electrical Connection as a major sponsor, one whose members also brightened Busch Stadium.  The IBEW/NECA partnership is seen throughout the stadium on ribbon boards, the giant outfield video board and the Electrical Connection sponsorship of the starting line up at the start of every home game.  It also remains a fixture at Ford Plaza, where the Cardinals have an educational display on its solar panels installed by the IBEW/NECA team.           On the broadcast side, the Electrical Connections sponsors the Cardinals on KMOX Radio and on Fox Sports Midwest.

The Electrical Connection’s presence is also seen on cloudy days and during night games through major improvements made to stadium lighting.  NECA contractor Sachs Electric and IBEW made the upgrades with new LED lighting that include dynamic theatrical effects.  The new stadium lighting improves the fan experience, whether watching the game at Busch or at home on television.  It is not only more cost efficient, but casts a higher quality light to better match day game illumination. See the time-lapse video of the IBEW/NECA installations and the video of the lights in operation.  Sachs and IBEW made a number of other electrical improvements at the stadium.

On the communications side, IBEW worked with Sachs Systems on a variety of improvements.  They include upgrades to the digital antennae system (DAS) to improve cell phone reception, new security and camera systems and improved WiFi.  Another NECA contractor, TSI Global Companies, also worked with IBEW on communications upgrades.

The Electrical Connection is also partnering with the St. Louis Cardinals on a to-be-announced STEM Education Day at Busch Stadium to salute 22 St. Charles County high school students who excel in STEM subjects.  The students were honored earlier on March 1, 2019 when the Electrical Connection co-sponsored the annual STEM Celebration Breakfast presented by EDC Business & Community Partners in St. Charles County.  Other Electrical Connection partnerships with the Cardinals are planned later in the year.

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).  Members provide safe and reliable electrical construction, maintenance, repair and replacement services across Missouri, the nation and the world.  For more information visit

Missouri Contractor Installed as AGC President at National Convention

in Associations/News
L to R: two representatives from Willis Towers Watson; ScottGreen, Tracy Hart, Josh Fisk and Sandra Rotty - all of Tarlton Corporation; and Eddie Stewart, president of AGC of America.

Missouri AGC Chapter Captures Coast-to-Coast Attention with National Awards

More than 100 Missouri contractors and staff from the Associated General Contractors of Missouri returned home after a momentous week at the Associated General Contractors of America national convention in Denver, April 1-4.

Two of their own assumed national leadership roles in the 26,000-member organization, member companies throughout the state took home national awards, and AGCMO was recognized with special chapter awards for diversity & inclusion, and for community service.

Dirk Elsperman

Dirk Elsperman, executive vice president, COO of St. Louis-based Tarlton Corp., was installed as 2019-20 president of the AGC of America’s board of directors on April 4. Kyle Phillips, vice president of Herzog Contracting Corp., based in St. Joseph, MO, also assumed the role of vice chair of the Highway Division at the AGCA convention.

Commenting on the appointments, Len Toenjes, CAE, AGCMO president, said, “We are so proud of our members and the national leadership roles they are assuming for our industry.  They will be helping to guide our industry’s initiatives on federal policy,

regulations, transportation funding, workforce development, diversity and safety, just to name a few. This is a huge commitment of time and energy for both Dirk and Kyle, and it’s wonderful to see both of them called upon to help guide the future of our industry.”

AGCMO member companies also were recognized nationally for safety excellence and specific construction projects, outstanding contributions to political action efforts, and diversity and inclusion.  The AGCMO chapter also received special awards for leadership in diversity & inclusion, and for community service and outreach.

Two companies took home awards in the 20th Annual Willis Towers Watson Construction Safety Excellence AWARDS (CSEA), elite awards that recognize companies that have developed and implemented premier safety and loss prevention programs and showcases companies that have achieved continuous improvements and maintenance of their safety and health management systems. HNTB Companies, with offices in Kansas City, MO, captured First Place in the Service Provider & Supplier Division  (over one million work hours) and Jefferson City, MO – based Twehous Excavating Co., Inc. was awarded First Place in the Heavy Division (under 200,000 work hours).

Tarlton JLT Build America Award (L to R) two representatives from Willis Towers Watson; ScottGreen, Tracy Hart, Josh Fisk and Sandra Rotty – all of Tarlton Corporation; and Eddie Stewart, president of AGC of America.

The JLT Build America Awards honor AGC members who build the nation’s most impressive construction projects ranging across the building, highway and transportation, utility infrastructure, and federal and heavy divisions. These projects, with their vision, scope, and grandeur, literally dare to challenge, dare to change the industry and the way we build.  Tarlton Corp. was a winner for the Missouri Botanical Garden’s Stephen and Peter Sachs Museum in the Building Under $10 million – Renovation category.  Herzog Contracting Corp. was recognized with a Merit Award in the Design-Build Civil category for the Sunrail Commuter Rail System in Orlando, FL.

Special AGCMO Member Recognition Awards went to John Alberici of St. Louis-based Alberici Constructors, Inc. for 40 years of contributions to the 535 Club (the highest PAC level). Al Landes of Herzog Contracting Corp. also was honored for 25 years of contributions to the 535 Club.

Frank Wilson with Eddie Stewart, president of AGC of America. Far right is Kim Waller, Willis Towers Watson.

Each year, the AGC president is given power to bestow special awards at his/her discretion.  This year, Eddie Stewart, president of AGCA, recognized Frank Wilson of St. Louis-based BFW Contracting LLC with a Chairman of the Year Award for service, leadership and dedication to the Diversity and Inclusion Committee.

Chapter Diversity & Inclusion Award (L to R) Len Toenjes, AGCMO; Frank Wilson, BFW Contracting LLC; Monica Bailey, McCarthy Building Companies; Steve Lewis, AGCMO; Eddie Stewart, President, AGC of America; Becky Spurgeon, Interface Construction Corporation; Bill Wagner, S. M. Wilson & Co.; and, Kim Waller, Willis Towers Watson.

The AGCMO chapter also received a Diversity & Inclusion Excellence Award for being champions in advancing diversity and fostering a culture of inclusion within their workforce, supply chain and in the communities they serve.   The award was accepted by Steve Lewis, vice-president and Len Toenjes, president, AGCMO; Frank Wilson, BFW Contracting LLC; and Monica Bailey, McCarthy Building Companies; Becky Spurgeon, Interface Construction Corp.; and Bill Wagner, S. M. Wilson & Co. – all from the St. Louis area.

Special Chapter Recognition for Special Olympics for Life
L to R: Michael Anderson, chair, AGC Charities; Len Toenjes, AGCMO; Chip Jones, Emery Sapp & Sons, Inc.; Bill Wagner, S. M. Wilson & Co.; Ed Twehous, Twehous Excavating Co., Inc.; and, Eddie Stewart, president of AGC of America.

AGCMO also received a Special Recognition Award for Special Olympics Training for Life Campus in Jefferson City, MO.  The award was accepted by Len Toenjes; Chip Jones, AGCMO chairman of the board, Emery Sapp & Sons, Inc.; Bill Wagner, S.M. Wilson & Co.; and Ed Twehous, Twehous Excavating Co., Inc. (Emery Sapp & Sons, Inc. and Twehous Excavating Co., Inc. are both located in mid-Missouri while S.M. Wilson & Co. is located in St. Louis.)

“We couldn’t be more elated,” added Toenjes.  “It’s very rewarding to see the outreach and charitable work of our member companies recognized on a national level.  AGCMO has demonstrated national leadership and excellence on a number of levels, and is setting an example nationwide, for building a more diverse workforce and supply chain for the future. I am very proud of everything our members have accomplished.”

The Associated General Contractors of America (AGC) is the leading association for the construction industry. AGC represents more than 26,000 firms, including over 6,500 of America’s leading general contractors, and over 9,000 specialty-contracting firms. More than 10,500 service providers and suppliers are also associated with AGC, all through a nationwide network of chapters.                                                                       

The Associated General Contractors of Missouri is the leading voice of the construction industry in Missouri, representing over 500 commercial, industrial, heavy and highway contractors, industry partners and related firms in 110 counties throughout Missouri.

5300 Centre Apartments in St. Peters, Mo Targets Summer Opening

in Companies/News

265-Unit Luxury Complex Capitalizes on Proximity to St. Peters City Centre Park with Town Square Concept

A new luxury apartment community is slated to open this summer in St. Peters, Mo.  Developed by Propper Construction Services5300 Centre Apartments will feature 265 units in a four-story, two-building complex at Mexico Road and St. Peters Centre Boulevard.  Designed as with town square concept, it will fully capitalize 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.

“The amenities and community concepts really stand out at 5300 Centre,” noted Julie Graziano of Asset Residential Management, which is handling the leasing.  “Among them is green space built on top of the parking decks that will feature community gardens with individual garden plots, outdoor gaming areas, grilling stations and space for recreational and relaxation activities.” The green space is accessed from each building.  The buildings are connected by a covered bridge.

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 and a car cleaning station;
  • Bicycle storage and repair shop;
  • Exquisite pet amenities, including a dog park and pet salon;
  • Resident business center; and
  • Resident storage.


“5300 Centre is the type of community development the city envisioned for the St. Peters special district that encompasses St. Peters city hall, the park and the Rec-Plex,” said Julie Powers, St. Peters director of planning, community and economic development.  “It’s a springboard for greater mixed-use development that compliments the office and medical office in place and should energize additional restaurant and retail development.  Its bike and walking trails will also fortify the trail system within the special district.”

The apartment complex 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.

The complex 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 $2,555 for three-bedroom suites.  For leasing information, call 636-922-9539 or visit the web site at

5300 Centre Introduces Propper Advantage Club Discounts

5300 Centre joins three other Propper apartment communities in introducing discounts to members of the Propper Advantage Club.  More than 25 St. Louis businesses and organizations belong to the club which provides a four percent discount on lease terms.

The Propper Advantage Club includes 5300 Centre, the Villages of Twin Oaks and 1400 Russell in Soulard.  For more information, visit

5300 Centre is designed by Zwick + Gandt Architecture   S.M. Wilson and Co. is the general contractor.

5300 Centre is the third major multi-family development for Propper Construction Services over the past year.  Last year, it opened the 1400 Russell Apartments in Soulard and the Villages of Twin Oaks mixed-use luxury apartment community in Twin Oaks, Mo.

Founded in 2014, Propper Construction Services is an active builder, construction manager and real estate developer in Missouri and Illinois.  Major local projects include two large bulk storage warehouses at Gateway Commerce Center, the 673,000-square-foot Gateway RT building and the 717,000-square-foot Gateway East 717 building, the 204 unit “Bramblett Hills” apartment community in O’Fallon, Mo., and the 254-unit “Alinea – Town and Country” apartment project, on a 11-acre track northwest of I-270 and Manchester Road along Des Peres Road.  Learn more at

Carpenters Funding Construction of Energy-Efficient Homes Next To NGA Site

in Associations/News


The St. Louis – Kansas City Carpenters Regional Council is investing in a start-up company that is building ultra-energy-efficient homes on a tract adjacent to the future National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency headquarters in North St. Louis.

Al Bond, executive secretary-treasurer for the Carpenters, said the project is another visible example of efforts to reenergize property on the city’s north side. The homes are located at the corner of Montgomery and 20th Streets.

“We’re investing $1.2 million in this housing development with the potential of 250 homes to be built,” said Bond. “NetZero LLC, the start-up, is building three display homes within the footprint of the NGA site. The Carpenters have invested in the factory that is manufacturing the panels for these homes. We also underwrote three construction loans on the display homes to provide NetZero with the capital to build them. Without (NorthSide Regeneration developer) Paul McKee, this would not be happening,” Bond added.

Developer for the energy-efficient homes project is Dwight Arant, owner of NetZero. The neighborhood is entitled Saint Louis Park Place.

NetZero COO Jon Bish said ranch and two-story floorplans range from 1,400 to 2,600 square feet. The three spec homes, which are headed for completion in May, are being built with expanded polyurethane structural insulated panels that give the homes an extremely tight envelope and high R-Value, R-28 walls and an R-40 roof.

“These panels are the basis for building net-zero or zero-energy ready homes,” Bish said. “Beyond the SIPs, we used Superior Walls for our foundations which give the basements extra insulation and efficiency. Energy Star windows, doors, lighting and appliances will be used to further reduce the amount of energy required to power the homes. We’re outfitting these homes with highly efficient ERV (energy recovery ventilation) systems and high-end mechanical air ventilation. And we’re equipping each of these homes with a rooftop solar array and battery backup system. All of these features combined enable our houses to achieve net zero.”

Congratulations SLCCC Best Practices & Diversity Award Winners!

in Associations/News

Best Practices

Advanced Work Packaging 

Midwestern Manufacturing Facility


Zero Accidents Techniques

Phillips 66 Wood River Refinery CCU-1 Turnaraound Project



Habitat for Humanity Headquarters and ReStore



Front End Planning

Washington University’s Pedestrian Bridge Replacement




Advanced Work Packaging

SSM St. Louis University Campus Renewal Hospital Project Bathroom Pods



SSM St. Mary’s Neonatal Intensive Care Unit Replacement


Diversity & Inclusion Finalists


Tom Finan – Construction Forum STL


People of Construction


Sultan Construction



St. Louis City Officials Reissue Building Permits for Micro-Hospital in NorthSide Regeneration Development

in Associations/News

Facility will fulfill much needed medical care in underserved north St. Louis City

NorthSide Regeneration received notification at noon on April 1 that the City of St. Louis reissued building permits on a micro-hospital planned for 1320 N. Jefferson Ave. in north St. Louis City. City officials had revoked the building permits in February citing inactivity on the former Pruitt-Igoe housing site and marking it as “abandoned.”

Hospital representative Mark S. Vincent said he did not understand why the city revoked the building permits because plans for the project were always securely in place.

“Our plans to build this important and much needed medical facility for the residents of north St. Louis City has never wavered,” said Vincent. “Today, following the announcement that the building permits have been reinstated, we are full steam ahead on the project. We have foundation work underway on the site and have a powerful financial structure in place to back it up. We are moving forward despite all the hurdles that we have had to endure to make this facility a reality for the people of north St. Louis City.”

The design builder on the project, KAI, submitted a letter to St. Louis City Building Commissioner Frank Oswald on March 27 requesting that the building permits be reinstated, stating that the project delay was the result of the lengthy Federal Government shutdown which has delayed the issuance of New Market Tax Credits (NMTC) for the project. KAI CEO Michael B. Kennedy, Jr. stated in the letter to Oswald that the project was never “abandoned” and that the tax credits are expected to be issued in late April or early May, with construction expected to resume in June.

“I am happy this much needed project is back on track,” said Kennedy. “We look forward to working together with city officials to fulfill NorthSide Regeneration’s vision for improving the lives of residents in north St. Louis City.”

Plans for the micro-hospital include three hospital beds and 24/7 emergency service. Vincent said he expects the facility to be completed by May 2020.

NorthSide Regeneration (NSR) is a mixed-use community development – a self-sustaining neighborhood of people, cultures, economic opportunity, safety and education with the infrastructure and growth to support key, necessary services for the community. For more information about NorthSide Regeneration, visit

HDA Architects Completed Tenant Build-Out for Airport Terminal Services

in Companies/News

HDA Architects recently completed a tenant build-out for Airport Terminal Services (ATS) in Maryland Heights, Missouri. The 16,166 SF office is located in Westport Plaza and spans two stories. Design features throughout the space include colorful accent walls, quartz waterfall countertops, reclaimed wood statement walls and geometric acoustical clouds. A notable design element is a retractable glass partition that connects the training room and break room, which cultivates a communal work environment. Paric Corporation was the General Contractor on the project

Electrical Connection Hosts Business Panel Discussion on Skilled Labor Development

in Associations/News

For Dennis Gralike, director of the IBEW/NECA Electrical Industry Training Center, the need to change the mindset of skilled labor development is abundantly clear at many high school career fairs.  “I’ll enter a gymnasium and find colleges set up on one side of the gym and everyone one else directed to set up on the other side,” notes Gralike.  “Then I’ll ask the career fair coordinator why colleges and the trade programs are separated.  After all, our program offers college credits and we train a lot of college students and graduates, all free of charge and with no student loans.”

Gralike was among four panelists in the March 27, 2019 St. Louis Business Journal “Future of Skilled Labor Development” Power Breakfast moderated by Publisher Robert Bobroff.  Bobroff said a record 240 people attended the event at the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center in Creve Coeur, Mo.  Other panelists included Bonnie Daniels, senior vice president, culture and people services, MiTekJeff L. Pittman, PhD, chancellor, St. Louis Community College; and Sandra Marks, senior vice president, Clayco.

All panelists agreed that collaboration and partnerships among community agencies, businesses and schools remains essential to skilled labor development.   But no industry is being more rapidly transformed by technology than the electrical and communications industry.   Gralike noted that the IBEW/NECA Electrical Industry Training Center is continually adapting its more than 70-course curriculum to meet those changes as it has for more than 75 years.  Through the Electrical Connection partnership, the training center is funded and operated jointly by the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 1 and the St. Louis Chapter of the National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA).

“The digital age, smart infrastructure, renewable energy, robotics, advanced manufacturing, integrated communications and so much more are not possible without the skilled electricians and communication technicians we train,” said Gralike.  “But there remains a significant stigma attached to construction work that puts off high school students and other career aspirants.  We have a more than 90 percent graduation rate that launches dynamic, well-paying engineering and building careers that power and connect our businesses and communities – and it’s free of charge!”

Gralike noted that Electrical Connection’s IBEW/NECA leadership is working to change the mindset on construction careers in several ways:

  • Investing in and supporting STEM education that connects science, technology, engineering and math to electrical careers.
  • Offering continuing education to advance pace setting skills, including 58 hours of college credits through education partnerships with St. Louis Community Collegeand most major university in St. Louis area. 
  • Educating career counselors and students about the dynamic changes in the industry with training center technology that includes a rooftop solar array and courses on Building Information Modeling and next generation electrical/communication installations, including green energy, smart building technology and advanced manufacturing.
  • Broadening outreach by partnering with community organizations to attract more minorities in the electrical trades.  More than 25 percent of apprentices at the training center are minorities.
  • Mentoring programs that strengthen career development and help aspiring entrepreneurs launch their own electrical and communications contracting firms.
  • Strategic outreach to engage business and civic organizations, including board service on the Hawthorn FoundationSt. Louis Regional Chamber, the Missouri Energy Initiative, theEconomic Development Center of St. Charles County and the Missouri Governor’s Workforce Development Task Force.

Electrical Connection members provide safe and reliable electrical construction, maintenance, repair and replacement services across Missouri, the nation and the world.  For more information visit

St. Louis Joins Worldwide Spotlight on Autism Awareness

in Associations/Companies/Homepage Primary/News

Lighting consultants and engineers were busy changing color filters to create a blue hue for St. Louis for World Autism Awareness Day on Tuesday April 2, 2019.  The effort lighting businesses and landmarks kicks off a number of initiatives by St. Louis Chapter of Autism Speaks for World Autism Awareness Month in April.

“We continue to advance understanding and acceptance,” noted Greg Yawitz, chairman of St. Louis Chapter of Autism Speaks’ board.  “With autism now diagnosed in one out of 59 children, the breadth of the spectrum means just about everyone knows someone living with autism. Those on the spectrum can be significantly impaired while others are found in the workplace, in college and raising families of their own.  Understanding the puzzle of autism and the breadth of the spectrum is at the heart of Autism Speaks fundraising and awareness efforts.” Autism Speaks is asking people worldwide to take the pledge to increase understanding and acceptance at

Autism impacts more than 70 million people worldwide.  Among the awareness Autism Speaks will advance throughout the year are:

  • Research indicates that stigma and denial can delay a diagnosis of autism, particularly in lower socioeconomic populations where the average age of diagnosis is significantly higher than in the general population.
  • People with autism learn, think and problem-solve in different ways – from highly skilled to severely challenged, and may require supports that can range from minimal to intensive.
  • Many people with autism have sensory sensitivities that impact their daily lives. Medical issues such as gastrointestinal (GI) disorders, seizures or sleep disorders as well as mental health challenges such as anxiety, depression and attention issues, often accompany autism.

HOK will be among several businesses participating in the April 2, 2019 Light it up Blue for Autism Speaks.  Others include West County Shopping Center, Scott Air Force Base, the Lumiere Place Casino and Four Seasons Hotel, James S. McDonnell Planetarium, SSM Health Cardinal Glennon Children’s Hospital and more.  The International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 1 and its Electrical Connection partnership with the St. Louis Chapter of the National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) will participate through its long-time sponsorship of the Planetarium lighting.

Autism Speaks also has a number of events in the coming months to advance awareness and fundraising including:

  • The April 17, 2019 Autism Speaks’ 8th Annual Chefs Gala at the Ritz-Carlton in Clayton, Mo.
  • The May 5, 2019 Autism Speaks Go Blue Run in Clayton, Mo.
  • The August 31, 2019 Louis Cardinal game that will feature autism awareness.
  • The October 12, 2019 Autism Walk in Forest Park.

For more information, visit Autism Speaks St. Louis’ Facebook page. Autism, or autism spectrum disorder (ASD), refers to a broad range of conditions characterized by challenges with social skills, repetitive behaviors, speech and nonverbal communication. For more information, visit


Edwardsville Resident & Builder To Retire From Tarlton And Grow His Company

in News/People
Matt Pfund


A longstanding leader in the construction industry is announcing his retirement from Tarlton Corporation to devote more time and energy to his own construction firm.

Matt Pfund, senior vice president at St. Louis-based Tarlton, will officially retire in early 2020 after 23 years in his position there to concentrate solely on Pfund Construction, the Edwardsville-based company he founded in 1993, as well as a few other personal ventures.

Pfund and his wife, Kristen, actively own and operate the commercial and residential construction firm that is known for a series of Edwardsville-centric development projects, many of them involving the rehabilitation and repurposing of downtown commercial buildings. In 2018, Pfund Construction received Business of the Year from the City of Edwardsville.

Pfund Construction’s notable projects along North Main Street in downtown Edwardsville include the 2016 rehab of an 1891 storefront (across from the Wildey Theatre) into ground-floor retail and an upper-story loft; the 2017 rehab of the Metcalf Building, a 1920s theater, into mixed-use retail and loft units; and the 2019 repurposing of long-time tavern Laurie’s Place into retail as well.

“We live in Edwardsville and we love continuing to build community here,” said Matt Pfund. “I’ve also really loved working for Tarlton all these years. It’s a great thing when you know you’re able to embark fully on your own venture, but it’s going to be equally difficult to leave a terrific company and fantastic people.”

February 2020 represents the official transition for Pfund from Tarlton to Pfund Construction. Pfund is a construction management graduate of Southern Illinois University Edwardsville. He and Kristen have three teenage children.

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