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Home Builders Association Says 2023 Permits Sluggish


Data from the Home Builders Association of St. Louis and Eastern Missouri reveal a slow start to single-family and multifamily permit applications compared to a year ago.

2023 President Jeremy Roth says permits are off to a sluggish start in early 2023 with single-family permits down 52 percent and multifamily permits down 61 percent in January compared with the same period in 2022.

“Construction costs and higher mortgage rates continue to challenge the industry,” said Roth, “but builder confidence is climbing as the number of units under construction is high … and we expect permit numbers to strengthen in the spring months.”

January permit data was unavailable for St. Louis City, Festus and Pacific.

The percentages cited above are based upon the following detailed permit numbers from the HBA of St. Louis and Eastern Missouri:

Southern Illinois Construction Advancement Program and Southern Illinois Builders Association Awards Program

The Southern Illinois Construction Advancement Program and Southern Illinois Builders Association will hold their Awards Program on Tuesday, March 21, 2023 from 5 to 7 p.m. at the SIBA Office, 1468 N. Green Mount Road, O’Fallon, Illinois.

Four firms will be recognized for 50 years of membership: Jim Taylor, Inc., Belleville, Illinois; DeLaurent Construction Company, Inc., Wilsonville, Illinois; Quad-County Ready Mix Corp., Okawville, Illinois; and Energy Culvert Company, L.L.C., Energy, Illinois.

Over 90 SIBA member firms throughout Southern Illinois will be honored and presented with awards for construction safety excellence.

The Southern Illinois Builders Association is a trade association of contractors representing approximately 500 commercial and industrial building, highway and utility construction contractors throughout the 39 counties in Southern Illinois.

TJ Wies – Passing the Torch

Text of former President and Chief Operating Officer of TJ Wies, Tim Weis:

Tim Wies

In accordance with TJ Wies Contracting’s long term strategic plan, it is with great pride that I am announcing that Cameron Wies is assuming the office of President and Chief Operating Officer of TJ Wies Contracting effective immediately.  

In his new role, Cameron will be responsible for providing day to day oversight, direction and support for the TJ Wies Leadership Team as well as all of our TJ Wies teammates. 

Over the past several years Cameron has proven himself as a leader, a teammate, a supporter, and problem solver. Cameron brings many of the same character traits to TJ Wies that you are accustomed to seeing.  

He is a very good communicator who is comfortable both asking for and listening to others’ opinions as well as formulating and respectfully expressing his own opinion.

He is creative and innovative in both his problem solving and also in setting the direction of TJ Wies’ future.  

He is a skillful collaborator/teambuilder who looks for ways for everyone to be successful.

He is committed to keeping the family aspect of TJ Wies Contracting while looking for growth opportunities for the company, therefore providing growth opportunities for those family members who seek to further develop in their careers.

He has the courage to do the right thing all of the time, no matter how costly.

Cameron also brings a different set of skills to TJ Wies than you have seen from me in the past and I am sure that you will appreciate these upgrades.

He is extremely organized which helps him stay on task, he assigns projects with adequate notice and then holds himself and others accountable for completion of their assignments within the timeframe.

He is a “finisher”, he stays involved in projects to see them through to completion, he does not jump from one “shiny object” to another. He tends to set a well thought out pace and waits for project completion and implementation success before starting another project.

He is very data driven, he sources and analyzes as much data as he can find before making a decision. He is always ready, aim, shoot as opposed to what you have seen in the past with my gut decisions.

As for me, I will be retaining my title of Chief Executive Officer and part time DFS, “Director of Fun Shit”. I will be available for consultation for Cameron, the Leadership Team, and anyone else who might have questions or concerns, but I will not be involved in the day to day activities of TJ Wies Contracting. I have the utmost confidence in Cameron and the Leadership Team, I am excited for the future of TJ Wies Contracting and am looking forward to watching where you all take this company over the years.  

My goal was to create a “Century Company”, which is one that has been successful for over 100 years, we have had 29 extremely successful years and it is time for Cameron and all of you to move it forward the next 29 years while developing the next group to continue on after that.   

Thank you to everyone who has been part of TJ Wies Contracting’s success over the years, first and foremost all of our TJ Wies family members both past and present, you have made us the company that we are.

Secondly to our customers – without you we are nothing, thank you for trusting us with your work and with your reputation, your reputation is on the line on every project you have and if we do not perform, your reputation suffers, that’s why your trust is critical to our success.  

To our suppliers, your skillful handling of pricing, inventory and logistics has allowed us to concentrate on what makes us successful -BUILDING, your services are paramount to our success.

To our Labor Supply Partners, we may have not always agreed on everything, but in most instances we have been on the same page, do what is right for the industry. You have been an integral part of our success over the years – Thank you

To our Service Providers – thank you for providing advice, mentorship, education and most importantly for keeping me from making more stupid decisions than I did.

Cameron Wies

Incoming President and CEO, Cameron Wies’ comments:

My vision for the future:

In the short term, we have a lot of transition to go through in the next couple of years. My personal goal is to help support everyone who has made this company truly great as they transition into retirement and pass along their duties and responsibilities to others.

Overall my goal is to always stay positive, to never back away for any worthwhile challenge and to continue to build with the help of each and every one of you a place we always enjoy to going to each and everyday and a career we are all proud of on the day we choose to retire.  

Thank you to everyone who has helped me along the way, I truly could not have done it without you.

Hope Gribble Earns Best of Green Schools Award

Awards Spotlights Organizations and Individuals Dedicated to Sustainability in Schools

Hope Gribble, Green Schools Manager for the Missouri Gateway Green Building Council, has been named a 2023 Best of Green Schools Award recipient for the Michelle Curreri Collaborator Award category, presented by the Center for Green Schools at the U.S. Green Building Council and Green Schools National Network.

The awards celebrate the hard work being done by people, schools, campuses and organizations to push the green school movement forward. For over a decade, Hope Gribble has led the development and management of multiple school sustainability programs that have driven the green school momentum in the state of Missouri and has included the Green Schools Quest: A Project-Based Challenge and Missouri Green Schools. The suite of programs, which have engaged over 200 Missouri schools to date, provide schools with guidance and resources for integrating green and healthy practices across their buildings and grounds, educational programming and school culture.

“I’m grateful for the many partners, teachers, students, school staff and volunteer mentors who have helped shape these programs and truly brought them to life,” remarked Hope Gribble. “Collaboration, creativity, and passion for elevating the nexus between human and environmental health are at the heart of this work. It’s incredible to see what we can accomplish together with these as our driving forces!”

“The Center for Green Schools relies on the hard work of volunteers and advocates who are committed to sustainable schools that enhance the health and wellbeing of all students and prepare them to lead a more sustainable future,” said Anisa Heming, director at the Center for Green Schools.

“The 2023 Best of Green Schools honorees represent a group of incredible individuals and organizations who have done extraordinary work for the green school movement.” The Center for Green Schools and Green Schools National Network received hundreds of nominations of individuals and organizations that have made an impact in advancing green schools in 2022. The 2023 recipients of the Best of Green Schools Award were announced during the Green Schools Conference in New Orleans.

Show-Me Green Schools: Pathways to Whole-School Sustainability is a suite of programs that support and recognize schools for their achievements across all three “pillars” of a green school: Reduced environmental impacts and costs; Improved health and wellness of schools, students and staff; and Effective environmental and sustainability education.

Managed collaboratively by the Missouri Gateway Green Building Council and the Missouri Environmental Education Association, the suite of programs include: The Green Schools Quest, a project-based, student driven challenge honoring teams of students who implement a low-or-no-cost sustainability project at their school with the help of a community mentor and a school staff lead. Missouri Green Schools, guiding and honoring schools across multiple levels of achievement recognition, from just starting their green and healthy journey to making significant gains in wellness, student engagement, cost-savings, and reduction of the school’s ecological footprint. The U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon School Award, a prestigious one-time only award for up to 5 schools per state who have made significant strides in each of the 3 green school pillars listed above.

KMOV Channel 4’s New Headquarters Now Under Construction by Keystone Construction Company

Design-build contractor Keystone Construction Company has begun work on the new 45,000-square-foot headquarters and state-of-the-art production studio for KMOV Channel 4 in Maryland Heights, Missouri. KMOV has broadcast from Gateway Tower at One Memorial Drive in downtown overlooking the Gateway Arch for more than 50 years and is expected to move into their new facility in May 2023.

Located near Westport Plaza and Interstate 270, the site includes a three-story office building, which is an ideal open slate for transforming into a broadcast space. The design-build project includes a major interior and exterior renovation. The new facility will feature two broadcast studios, a large newsroom, dressing rooms, control rooms, data center, seven transmission satellites and fitness center. The two-acre site provides ample room for parking, some of which will be covered.

“KMOV’s new headquarters will be at the forefront of broadcast facilities in the nation to optimize viewer engagement now and be readily transformable for the future,” said JD Sosnoff KMOV St. Louis Vice President/General Manager. “Additionally, our project team is constructing the very best in modern production and creative collaboration spaces to provide advertisers with what they deserve in a broadcast partner.”

Work also includes the installation of a backup generator with the capability to power the entire building and electrical and HVAC system upgrades to accommodate KMOV’s higher demands. The project team will install specialty sound proofing systems, new audio/visual equipment throughout and replace all lights with new LED fixtures to improve energy efficiency.

As design-build contractor, Keystone is tasked with defining the project scope and ensuring that the design and construction are delivered in alignment with the client’s schedule and budget goals. During the current supply environment, Keystone has identified and sourced critical building components with long lead times to ensure the project schedule remains on track. The architect is Partners By Design. Cole & Associates is the civil engineer. Barrett, Woodyard & Associates is providing mechanical, electrical, plumbing and fire protection engineering services. NAI DESCO is the real estate broker.


Keystone Construction Company is a St. Louis-based general contractor with expertise in design/build projects for office, retail, industrial and healthcare clients. For nearly 35 years, Keystone projects have reflected the company’s commitment to superior architecture and design, quality materials and craftsmanship that stand the test of time. The general contractor has received numerous design and construction awards, including Building St. Louis awards in 2017, 2019 and 2021; Project 64 West Excellence in Community Development Award; and Excellence in Design Award from American Builders Company and Nucor. Harvard University chose Keystone’s unique process for a course study called “How to do Design/Build Right.” For more information, visit https://keystone-stl.com.

Lawrence Fabric and Metal Structures Receives 2022 International Achievement Award

During the October 2022 annual Advanced Textiles Association Expo in Charlotte, North Carolina, Lawrence Fabric and Metal Structureswas recognized with International Achievement Awards for design and excellence in fabric productions and applications! The Lawrence Team was honored to receive not one, but two, Outstanding Achievement Awards. This pair of awards includes work for Parkside Grille in the Commercial Awnings & Canopies category and one for the Missouri History Museum St. Louis Sound in the Fabric Graphics category. To learn more about these award-winning projects, visit https://www.lawrencefabric.com/news/2022-international-achievement-award/

Outstanding Achievement – Fabric Graphics-Missouri History Museum St. Louis Sound

Fabricated and installed six hanging graphic banners on the outside of the History Museum building east and west sides. Printed on Mesh fabric with 2” flat stock on perimeter. Banner sizes included two 10’ x 27’, two 18’ x 27’ two 11’ x 21’. Installed with 3/8” x 3 screw bolts 1” self-tapping screws. The sheer size of all the hanging banners is a unique aspect of this project.  We had to custom design and fabricate banner hanging framework and the 40′ high installation was challenging.

Outstanding Achievement –Commercial Awnings & Canopies <1000 Sq ft-Parkside Grille

Parkside Grille outdoor fabric patio canopy with radius front, 32’ 7” wide x 4’ 4”. high (including 1’ box) x 5’ 2” projection. Fabric is Weblon Coastline plus traditional stripes Pirate Black & White. Aluminum square tubing framework, with four galvanized post supports mounted to existing concrete. The challenging and unique design aspect of this canopy was getting the stripes in the fabric to match up at the radius angles.

Winners were selected based on complexity, design, workmanship, uniqueness and function. Judges included industry experts, editors, architects, educators and design professionals who were chosen for their knowledge in a particular field of study or product area. 

Two Proposed STL Riverfront Developments Studying Feasibility



The developers of two separate riverfront development projects totaling nearly 150 acres and more than $1.3 billion continue to perform financial feasibility studies.

Proposed Gateway South Development

Gateway South is a $1.2 billion development being proposed by St. Louis-based Good Developments Group on 80 acres of former industrial ground along the St. Louis riverfront just south of the Gateway Arch Grounds at Chouteau’s Landing. GDG plans to work with the St. Louis Port Authority Commission and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers on site flooding improvements.

In August, the Port Authority approved a resolution to evaluate the financial feasibility of GDG’s proposal. If approved, it is estimated to be a 10-year project that will build three mixed-use districts comprised of recreational, residential, advanced manufacturing, office and entertainment.

Lighthouse Point, proposed by Nashville-based M2 Development Partners, encompasses 67.5 acres just north of I-270 along the Mississippi River on Riverview Drive in North St. Louis City. The $325 million redevelopment project – which could include a marina, waterpark, themed hotels and restaurants – inked an agreement earlier this year with the St. Louis Port Authority Commission to commence a financial feasibility study. M2 Development Partners is paying the commission $25,000 for the study.

Proposed Lighthouse Point Development

The proposed Lighthouse Point hospitality destination would be located 1.5 miles from the new St. Louis Zoo Wild Care Park on the site of the former North Shore Golf Course. The project is proposed to be delivered in four phases. Phase one of the project is envisioned to begin in the second quarter of 2023.

The developer acquired the land for this development in 1999 and has worked with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to mitigate future flooding at the site.

Rebar Demand Spurs Construction of Troy, IL Plant



Nu Way Companies, one of the largest construction material and equipment suppliers in the St. Louis region, has broken ground on a 35,000-square-foot fabrication facility in Troy, Illinois.

Contegra Construction is building the plant, which will enable Nu Way to increase its rebar production fivefold.

Once the facility is up and operating in mid-2023, Nu Way President and COO Greg Rhomberg says the company will be able to increase its annual rebar production from 3,100 tons to 15,000 tons.

“E-commerce-driven warehouse construction coupled with a surge in infrastructure spending has created soaring demand for rebar, a critical element for tilt-up and road construction,” said Rhomberg, who represents third-generation company leadership. “On top of that, health care, schools and other concrete projects are also driving demand for reinforcing rebar.”

According to the American Iron and Steel Institute, rebar demand has increased nearly 9 percent from January through August 2022 compared with the same period in 2021.

The Neurosciences Research Building at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, currently under construction, is one example of a project requiring large quantities of rebar. The job calls for a total of 6,700 tons.

Contegra Project Director Jared Lengermann says the construction project calls for 31,000 square feet of manufacturing space and 4,000 square feet of office. The project site is adjacent to Nu Way’s existing facility on Formosa Road and Interstate 55 in Troy.

The project, which began last month, is undergoing foundational and site work at this time. BJC Healthcare and AB-InBev are other large consumers of rebar and are Nu Way customers.

Contegra is constructing the building with tilt-up concrete panels. The new rebar facility will be equipped with a 21-foot clear height fabrication area featuring three bays. Once operational, Nu Way’s rebar plant will be able to process rebar on 3.5-ton coils and straight lengths up to 60 feet long. A 16-ton magnetic crane, a 10-ton crane and a five-ton crane will serve the bays.

Other construction project partners include J.F. Electric, Vee-Jay Cement Contracting, Illinois Electric Works and Affton Fabricating and Welding Company.

Nu Way’s additional facilities are in Jefferson City, Jackson and Wentzville, MO.

Master Grower Ron Mitchell Joins Clayco

Controlled Environment Agriculture expert joins design-build leader Clayco to help drive the company’s growth as a fully integrated design-build solution reshaping indoor agriculture.  

To support its continuing expansion in the Controlled Environment Agriculture (CEA) space, national design-build and construction company Clayco has hired Ron Mitchell as Director of Controlled Environment Agriculture. Ron will be applying his vast horticultural expertise to all Clayco’s CEA projects. As part of Clayco’s Food and Beverage team, he will advise project teams and cultivate relationships with growers. 

“I’m excited to support Clayco in its mission to organize the engineering and procurement process to adapt to each grower’s unique objectives. I will be the liaison between biology and engineering. My experience lends increased understanding of agriculture, plant health, and the growing process. This will further reduce project risk and offer truly integrated, comprehensive solutions for success at first yield,” said Ron Mitchell. “We have a talented and diverse team who will be leading the way as the industry evolves. What we are doing here goes beyond building buildings – we are a part of a food production revolution. It’s about cooperation, not competition, and Clayco is focused on helping talented growers reach their full potential.”

“We are thrilled to have Ron join our team,” said Anthony Johnson, President & Shareholder and Industrial Business Unit Leader. “Safety and speed are our specialties, and growers need to move quickly to solve the world’s food supply chain issues. Clayco’s integrated approach and ability to provide services across design, engineering, and construction is a game changer for this industry.” 

Ron Jones, Senior Principal, Clayco also added, “Ron’s  expertise in the industry will help ensure that our projects are in line with CEA specific standards, best practices, and technology, especially in an industry that is rapidly growing.. Ron embraces innovation and alternative project delivery methods, and his extensive industry knowledge enables him to provide valuable insights during all stages of a CAPEX project.”

Clayco is involved in CEA projects with a capex value over $2 Billion and has been involved with nearly 150 acres of CEA space over the past two years alone, including multiple national multi-site programs in the vertical grow and greenhouse space. 

Ron started his indoor farming career working at the UC Berkeley field office greenhouse with Professor Paul Droll, the father of modern hydroponics. Throughout his career Ron has founded numerous vertical farms, in places as diverse as Hawaii and West Africa. He has worked as a respected consultant in the CEA industry. Most recently he was the Master Grower and Director of Grow Operations at OnePointOne, Inc, a vertical farm startup.

Clayco is a full-service, turnkey real estate development, master planning, architecture, engineering, and construction firm that safely and sustainably delivers the highest quality solutions to clients across North America on time, on budget, and above and beyond expectations. With $4.9 billion in revenue for 2021, Clayco specializes in the “art and science of building,” providing fast track, efficient solutions for industrial, commercial, institutional and residential-related building projects. For more information, visit www.claycorp.com.

AGC of Missouri, Contractors Bringing Suicide Prevention to the Fore

By now, most of us know the dangers that can come from working on a construction site. But what about the dangers lurking the rest of the time?  According to the latest toolbox talks put together for September, Suicide Prevention Month, those dangers are literally “killing us.”

The facts are sobering. In multiple years, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found construction and extraction was the Number 1 occupational group with male suicides (15% in 2012, 16% in 2015). In the general population, suicide occurs in 27 out of every 100,000 people. In construction, the number is closer to 53 suicides per 100,000 workers. In the U.S., a construction worker dies by suicide once every 12 minutes. Another way to look at it: 123 of us die from suicide each day. View: https://constructionsuicideprevention.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/09/1_Construction_and_Suicide.pdf

The Associated General Contractors of Missouri is working full throttle during September, with the kick-off last week of Suicide Awareness Week (Sept. 5-9.) The AGCMO safety team and its Safety Committee members held safety stand-down’s at Alberici Constructors, Inc., McCarthy Building Companies, TJ Weis Contracting, Inc. and at BJC Healthcare and NGA job sites. They also delivered specialized training to Guarantee Electrical, PARIC and Holland Construction, among others. QPR (Question, Persuade, Refer) Mental Health Suicide Prevention Training, a two-hour training program, is available to members as well as the two-hour, Vital Cog Training – Construction Industry Focused Suicide Prevention and Awareness Training.

AGCMO has delivered its message to more than 1800 workers so far this month with its Pledge of Hope Suicide Awareness Campaign, offering training, materials, toolbox talks and professional resources to both employers and workers.  Materials/resources can be found at: https://bit.ly/3LczkIC  AGCMO’s 12 Mental Health Monday Toolbox Talks, prepared in conjunction with Washington University in St. Louis, can be sourced at: https://bit.ly/3BaJHYR

Suicide is a serious problem in the construction industry,” says Brandon Anderson, vice president, safety, AGCMO. “Construction is a high stress job with an accepting culture for alcohol and drug use, as well as a ‘tough guy’ culture.,We are committed to offering our members the necessary tools and resources to help save lives. Mental health needs to always be a part of the safety conversation.”

To stay safe on the jobsite as it relates to mental health and suicide awareness, Anderson reminds workers to look out for one another, identify potential warning signs, and have the courage and compassion to ask, “Are you ok?” As a worker, if you are struggling with your mental health, it is important to ask for help. You are not alone. There are many organizations and resources out there that can help:

Immediate help is available through the new 988 Direct Dial or text connection to crisis counselors’ service. The 24-hour Suicide Prevention Hotline also provides a lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 or via the Web at: suicidepreventionlifeline.org

AGCMO also is taking a leadership role on the issue nationally, with a speaking engagement this week at

The American Contractors Insurance Group (ACIG) Safety/Claims Workshop in San Diego, CA.  Anderson also serves as co-chair of two national task forces, the new AGC of America Mental Health Suicide Prevention Task Force and the CPWR (aka: The Center for Construction Research and Training) Peer Support Task Force.

For additional information or to schedule training, contact Brandon Anderson at banderson@agcmo.org or call 636-887-5207.

The Associated General Contractors of Missouri (AGCMO) represents the united voice of the construction industry throughout the state of Missouri. AGC of Missouri represents nearly 550 commercial building, industrial, highway, transportation, and utility infrastructure contractors, industry partners and related firms in 110 counties across the state of Missouri. AGCMO operates offices in St. Louis, Jefferson City and Springfield. Visit: www.agcmo.org