Gateway Design Studio, LLC Celebrates 200th Anniversary of the Old McKendree Chapel in Jackson, Missouri


The Old McKendree Chapel 200th Anniversary celebration took place on Sunday, September 22nd with a traditional worship service, along with dedications and remarks from community and church leaders. Photos and a brief article about the 200th Anniversary event are available through the Southeast Missourian newspaper and online at https://www.semissourian.com/gallery/35628. 

The Chapel and property have a significant historical story as the oldest standing chapel west of the Mississippi. Built in 1819, the chapel is listed on the National Register of Historic Places https://nationalregisterofhistoricplaces.com/mo/cape+girardeau/state.html.

Gateway Design Studio completed the master plan for the property renovation of the Old McKendree Chapel last year, working with Craig Milde, AIA at Design + Advice Architects as well as the City of Jackson, Missouri, the chapel’s property Trustees, and other church and community leaders.

GDS’ purpose for this project was to provide Site and Landscape Master Planning documents for the existing historic chapel and cemetery site located in Jackson, Missouri. The site currently has an existing chapel built in 1819, the Williams Cabin and natural spring, a building serving as the caretaker house, the cemetery grounds south of County Road 36, and other accessory buildings and improvements.

The Old McKendree Chapel Master Plan provided design recommendations and guidelines for the following program elements and improvements:

  • FUTURE FACILITIES – Plan for future Visitors Center for meeting space, restrooms, interpretive center; recommendations for dedication elements such as trees, plaques, donor pavers, benches, garden
  • ENTRANCE AND PARKING LOT IMPROVEMENTS – Plan for parking area for 150 vehicles also to include a bus turnaround at the future Visitor’s Center; planned entrance road improvement for bus access to future expanded parking area
  • OTHER BUILDINGS & STRUCTURES – Provide for additional picnic areas or a small pavilion with restroom for small gatherings, family events; and develop existing Williams Cabin as an interpretive museum displaying period items and relics of the early 1800’s era
  • HISTORIC PRESERVATION – Featuring the path of an historic railway that cuts through the site, future plans provide for additional preservation methods for chapel site such as the wagon stage area, natural spring and the Williams Cabin
  • SIGNAGE AND INFORMATION – Provide improvements to the entrance sign for better visibility; wayfinding plan for directional signs, parking, visitor welcome/rules for the property, map of the property; and additional interpretive signs for the natural spring, old railroad line, natural resources i.e. trees, woodland, creek-riparian habitat, preservation areas
  • TRAIL SYSTEM – Create a trail system that continues to cemetery and provides a good connection, establish a Native Wildflower Trail that ties into interpretive areas on the chapel site for walking tours and provide a Cemetery trail for walking tours, history, areas for reflection/meditation
  • ADA ACCESSIBILITY  Provide ADA access to existing chapel and restrooms, along with ADA designated parking
  • SITE FURNITURE AND ACCESSORIES – Recommendations for park benches for seating at key locations i.e. trail head, contemplative areas, restroom facility, drop off/parking area; provide for trash receptacles, a designated smoking station, bike racks and security bollards for restricted areas
  • NATURAL RESOURCE PRESERVATION AND ENHANCEMENT – Provide for preservation of Creek & Drainageways by creating a riparian habitat with erosion control, and preservation and enhancement of woodland wildlife habitat, and reserve and protect few remaining Liberty Trees that remain
  • LANDSCAPE IMPROVEMENTS AND BUFFERING – Provide for noise and visual buffering, enhancement of existing features on the property with native plants 
  • STORM WATER MANAGEMENT – Recommendations for flow control of tributary creeks with rock check dams; provide for mitigation of runoff from adjacent subdivision development with bio-swales, basins, plantings
  • LIGHTING AND SECURITY – Secure perimeter fencing around the historic chapel site, and a locked gate access to certain areas of the property for additional security; and additional lighting for chapel, Williams Cabin, entrance road access, parking lot
  • BUDGET AND FUNDING – Long-term plan for the Board to prioritize projects; recommendations for local grants, donations, supporters, and recommendations for short- and long-range funding mechanisms.    

For more information regarding the Gateway Design Studio, LLC and the Old McKendree Chapel Master Plan project, the public can contact Patrick Worzer at (314) 703-1800 or visit the company’s web site at www.gatewayds.com.


Gateway Design Studio Celebrates Completion of Phase 1 of the Cotton Belt Trail in Sikeston, Missouri


Phase 1 of Master Plan converted the former Union Pacific Railroad rail corridor into city-operated recreational trail facility

Gateway Design Studio, LLC – a professional planning, landscape architectural and environmental design firm located in St. Louis – is celebrating the completion of the first phase of the Cotton Belt Trail in Sikeston, Missouri.

In 2016 the City of Sikeston desired the development of a master plan for the conversion of the former Union Pacific Railroad rail corridor into a city operated recreational trail facility.

As the lead project planner, Gateway Design Studio – along with St. Louis-based The i5 Group – prepared the Comprehensive Trail Master Plan for the City back in summer/fall of 2016. GDS then teamed with Water’s Engineering (Sikeston, MO) to do the design/engineering drawings for Phase 1 in 2017 – 2018. Phase 1 of the trail was completed this summer.

Gateway Design Studio, LLC and The i5 Group developed Phase 1 of the Master Plan creating a vision for the trail as an important link to the City’s downtown district and neighborhoods. The team examined existing conditions, developed a phasing plan, conceptual trail options and cost estimates. Public engagement was part of the scope which included stakeholder meetings and open houses.

The project goal was to develop a multi-use recreational trail that links to nearby existing businesses, residential, park and trail systems, beautifying this corridor adjacent to one of the main thoroughfares through the city. The plan’s estimated cost for Phase 1 was $378,000.

Phase 1 improvements included the design and construction of approximately 3,300 linear feet or .62 miles of multi-use trail. Encompassed in the improvements are main trailheads at the historic Sikeston Depot and at the Main Street intersection terminus:

          KEY ELEMENTS

  • 3,300 L.F. Trail Section
  • Historic Preservation
  • Intersection Crosswalk Design
  • ADA accessibility
  • Trail Head Design
  • Signage/Wayfinding
  • Landscape Improvement Guidelines
  • Storm Water Management 


Design Studio’s design and specification of trail system elements included:

  • Conceptual and Preliminary Trail Alignment
  • Landscape Improvements
  • Site furniture (Benches, Trash Receptacles, Water Fountains, Bike Racks)
  • Information Kiosk and Trailhead Monument Signage
  • Ornamental Fencing 


  • 79 new trees were planted along the Trail, which included Missouri native and drought tolerant species
  • The Historic Train Depot features new bench seating, bike rack, drinking fountain and Information Kiosk
  • Funds were made available by the Federal Highway Administration through its TAP Program, coordinated through the Missouri Department of Transportation with City of Sikeston, Missouri. 
  • Future improvements at the Sikeston Depot Trailhead call for a future park with pavilion, special pavement, historic markers, improved parking and a railroad themed inclusive playground:

Commenting on the Sikeston Cotton Belt Trail project, Gateway Design Studio Owner/Principal R. Patrick Worzer, ASLA notes, “This project represents a great recreational and multi-use trail opportunity for the City of Sikeston and surrounding New Madrid County. Phase 1 will serve as an important cornerstone as part of this multi-phase trail system which will link surrounding businesses, residential and parks along the US Highway Business 60 corridor. We are pleased to have teamed with Water’s Engineering as part of the planning and design of this exciting new transportation and recreational asset for the community!”.

For more information regarding the Gateway Design Studio, LLC and the Sikeston “Rail to Trail” Historic Depot Trailhead Master Plan project, the public can contact Patrick Worzer at (314) 703-1800 or visit the company’s web site at www.gatewayds.com. 

R. Patrick Worzer, ASLA, RLA, CLARB serves as the principal owner and design leader for Gateway Design Studio, LLC, a professional planning, landscape architectural and environmental design firm located in St. Louis, Mo. Worzer is a member of the following organizations; ASLA – American Society of Landscape Architects and MPRA-Missouri Parks and Recreation Association and is a Certified Professional with CLARB – Council of Landscape Architects Registration Board. He can be reached via email at rpworzer@gatewayds.com. 

Gateway Design Studio, LLC is a next generation design firm based on over 25-years commitment of experience and service to many of our past and present clients. GDS serves its clients by providing innovative urban planning, landscape architecture and environmental design within the Midwest region. Our design expertise transcends within a variety of markets notably in parks/recreation, institutional, communities and commercial/office sectors. Past projects range in construction value from $25,000 to $10 Million.

Leonardo DRS to Build New Engineering and Manufacturing Complex in Bridgeton, Missouri


Leonardo DRS, Inc. announced today that it will build a new engineering development and light manufacturing facility and offices in Bridgeton, Missouri, to accommodate its growing Land Systems line of business. The new facility is expected to be ready by early 2020.

The company will invest in a new, best-in-class engineering, research and development and laboratory space to serve as the focal point for the majority of the business unit’s development and platform systems integration activities.  The business is a leading integrator of a wide range of systems for U.S. Army, Air Force and Marine Corps ground platforms, including reconnaissance and surveillance, mission support, and vehicle survivability and lethality. The line of business also maintains an 85-acre heavy manufacturing campus in West Plains, Missouri.

Additionally, the new St. Louis area facility will be home to the business unit headquarters, housing leadership, management and a centralized back office functionality.

“Our company has been growing and together with the expanding mission-critical needs of our customers, we now require a more modern and efficient facility,” said Aaron Hankins, vice president and general manager of the Leonardo DRS Land Systems line of business. “The St. Louis area has been our long-time home, and we look forward to being a part of this community for years to come,” Hankins said.

The current facility is more than 50 years old and no longer meets company requirements for efficient manufacturing and day-to-day operations.  The future site in Bridgeton gives the business the appropriate space to build a modern facility, while providing the flexibility to expand with minimal impacts to the current workforce.

“This region and Leonardo DRS will benefit as the business continues to be anchored in the greater St. Louis area as a result of this new investment,” Hankins said.

Additionally, Leonardo DRS is a believer in supporting education in the community and is working with the Pattonville School District by executing a formal agreement to further Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) initiatives in an extended learning opportunity (ELO) program for high school students. The partnership also creates additional learning opportunities for elementary students and faculty in the district, as well as mentoring and job shadowing opportunities for high school students.

“This is an important move and will permit our operations to advance and achieve success for our customer, the region and our company for many years to come,” Hankins said.  

Leonardo DRS is a prime contractor, leading technology innovator and supplier of integrated products, services and support to military forces, intelligence agencies and defense contractors worldwide. Its Land Systems business unit is recognized leader in the design and integration of complex technologies into new and legacy systems and platforms for global military and commercial customers.

EPA Recognizes Liberty, Missouri Design-Build Wastewater Treatment Facility for Excellence and Innovation in Clean Water Infrastructure


On November 8, 2018, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recognized 30 clean water infrastructure projects for excellence and innovation within the Clean Water State Revolving Fund (CWSRF) program. Honored projects include large wastewater infrastructure projects to small decentralized and agriculture projects.

The City of Liberty previously sent their wastewater to Kansas City to get treatment from another plant. However, when this facility had to respond to a consent decree to reduce CSOs, an increase in rates for Liberty would have been a result. Liberty decided to forgo transferring their wastewater and instead took out a $79 million CWSRF loan to build a new state of the art wastewater treatment facility of their own and perform conveyance system improvements. The new facility was the first Missouri CWSRF project to use a design-build approach. Under a design-build contract, the owner contracted with a single design and construction team led by Goodwin Brothers Construction. In a traditional design-bid-build project, the owner manages separate contracts for design and construction. Some of the potential advantages of design-build include quicker project delivery; fewer changes, claims, and litigation; enhanced project coordination; and firm costs. The new facility built using this design-build approach has a 5 MGD capacity and includes treatment processes for activated sludge, bio-phosphorus, and nitrogen reduction. This facility has received a Design-Build Institute of America 2017 National Award for Merit in water/wastewater and was named Project of the Year for 2017 by the Design-Build Institute of America-Mid-America Region.

Goodwin Brothers Construction is a 3rdgeneration General Contractor providing Design Build and Design Bid Build delivery projects in the water and wastewater sectors.  For more information on this project please visit Spotlight

Spartan Light Metal Products Breaks Ground In Mexico, Missouri


The Korte Company has recently begun construction on a 135,000 square foot die cast manufacturing facility for Spartan Light Metals in Mexico, Missouri. The new state of the art facility will utilize lighter weight materials to meet the auto industry’s increasing demand for lightweight, more fuel efficient structural components. The move will help solidify Spartan Light Metal Products’ position as a leader in the growing electric propulsion systems market.

The project marks The Korte Company’s second project for Spartan Light Metals. In 2017, The Korte Company completed a design-build 92,000 square foot expansion for the company in Sparta, Illinois.

When complete in 2019, the facility will have the capacity for four large tonnage die cast machines, 3,500 ton or larger with the ability to cast either Magnesium or Aluminum.

The Korte Company, founded in 1958, is headquartered in St. Louis, Missouri with offices in Highland, Illinois; Norman, Oklahoma; and Las Vegas, Nevada. The company manages, on average, an excess of $250 million in annual construction volume.

The Korte Company’s project expertise includes building for federal, state and local government agencies as well as the design and construction of school, healthcare facilities, medical office buildings, warehouse/distribution centers, religious facilities, commercial buildings, recreation centers and office complexes.

Future Of Hyperloop In Missouri Is Highlighted During Freightweek STL Conference


As excitement continues to grow for the transformative Hyperloop ONE project and prospective locations throughout the world that can bring this innovative technology to life, members of Missouri’s Hyperloop Coalition updated attendees at the inaugural FreightWeek STL conference on the steps they are taking to help bring the Hyperloop to Missouri.

The Missouri Hyperloop Coalition is a public-private partnership of several civic organizations and the Missouri Department of Transportation. The Coalition has taken the lead in coordinating a major engineering feasibility study of the Hyperloop technology, as well as the proposed route. Missouri is among the top five sites in the world under consideration for the first inter-city route. The technology combines two types of technologies that already exist – Maglev trains, which use magnetic levitation to move vehicles, and vacuum tubes. These two technologies create a coasting effect that would allow for the movement of people and goods at 700 miles per hour. The proposed Missouri route would run between St. Louis and Kansas City along Interstate 70.

Tom Blair, MoDOT’s District Engineer for St. Louis, and Andrew Smith, Vice President of Entrepreneurship and Innovation with the St. Louis Regional Chamber, are members of the Coalition and provided an update May 22 on this innovative project.

Blair has played a crucial role in bringing the concept of Hyperloop to Missouri. In 2015, he led MoDOT’s Road to Tomorrow team, exploring innovations that could generate new revenue for transportation in Missouri. The effort received national recognition by AASHTO. He spoke about many of the innovative concepts that have come out of Road to Tomorrow, including the discovery of Hyperloop, which would create a lucrative revenue stream from the energy created with air traveling through the Hyperloop tube.

“I got the chance to go to Los Angeles to the headquarters of Hyperloop One, and I walked in somewhat as a pessimist,” noted Blair. “I didn’t think a new mode of transportation could be created. But I also walked in optimistic because of my work leading the Road to Tomorrow initiative. After I spent a half a day with the Hyperloop team at their headquarters, I was excited to come back to Missouri and convince my leadership team that we need to figure out how to partner with this Hyperloop team.”

From there, Hyperloop One, now known as Virgin Hyperloop One, created a global challenge to bring awareness to the project and form partnerships that would help bring this project to life. The Missouri team applied to participate in the challenge and was initially selected as a semifinalist for its proposed St. Louis-Kansas City line but not a finalist. Hyperloop was still impressed by the KC-Stl route proposal, and after further collaboration and discussions, the route is now among the top five in the world to potentially be built.

Andrew Smith, the co-founder of the Missouri Hyperloop Coalition, has become a leading advocate for ultra-high speed transportation in the Midwest region as a means to spur innovation and economic development. He is working to not only bring Hyperloop technology to Missouri but is also with the departments of transportation from several states to promote a “Heartland Hyperloop” route that would ultimately connect Denver, Kansas City, St. Louis, Chicago, Indianapolis, Columbus and Pittsburgh. He spoke at the conference about why the Hyperloop technology made sense for our region.

“We believe the next big mode of transportation is Hyperloop,” Smith said. “We are more than just a nation of city and states, we are a nation of megaregions. Kansas City and St. Louis are strategically located megaregions. Imagine what we can do if we can connect these two megaregions. And that’s essentially what Hyerloop is doing. It’ll allow you to travel between downtown KC and downtown St. Louis in under 30 minutes.”

Smith pointed out that Hyperloop would make St. Louis the 9th largest economic development mega region in the country. It would be bigger than Boston, San Francisco, Detroit, Minneapolis or Seattle. St. Louis, Kansas City and Columbia would be able to combine workforces to attract development in the state, which would help strengthen our position as a global leader.

Both Smith and Blair touted the advantages Missouri has over the other proposed routes that include paths through Denver, Texas, Dubai, India and one connecting Chicago to Pittsburgh. Missouri offers a straight route to enable the highest speeds, would connect two major metropolitan regions with demand for shorter commute times, low land cost, a favorable regulatory environment, significant engagement from both public and private sectors and an ideal central location to begin construction of transcontinental route.

Smith pointed out that every milestone has been met or surpassed so far, including endorsement from MoDOT, support from the Missouri Department of Economic Development and full engagement with Hyperloop One. Currently a feasibility study is being completed byengineering firm Black and Veatch, which is based in Kansas City, at no cost to tax payers. Among the items being studied are precise route/alignment along I-70, land issues that will be encountered (i.e. tunnels, bridges, etc.), regulatory frameworks that will allow the system to be built, cost, economic and social impacts and the ability to run profitably. The study will be complete in September or October.

“We believe that Virgin Hyperloop One is going to be able to successfully commercialize this technology,” Smith said. “The world is only becoming more competitive, and Hyperloop One is a transformative economic development project. It’s about jobs, talent attraction, investment, innovation and showing global leadership.  There is a real opportunity to bring this technology here, and we would love to be the first place in the world to have Hyperloop One.”

For more information on the project, visit https://hyperloop-one.com/.  To see a full schedule of events for FreightWeek STL, click here. For detailed descriptions of each of the Education Sessions, click here. To learn more about FreightWeek STL, or register to attend, visithttp://freightweekstl.thefreightway.com/.

The Waterways Journal, Inc., is a full-service media company that produces trade magazines, trade shows like IMX, directories, websites and related communications. It is a family owned business operating in St. Louis, Mo. since 1887. Through its division, Ripple Custom Media, it also produces consumer titles and provides custom publishing services. 

The Institute for Trade and Transportation Studies (ITTS) is a multistate research institution formed to assist member states on understanding the relationship of transportation needs to international and commercial traffic.  ITTS is incorporated as a 501(c)(3) in the State of Louisiana. Current membership consists of the State Departments of Transportation from the following States: Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Virginia and West Virginia. ITTS’s mission focuses on providing research data and expert opinions to its Members concerning the effects of commercial freight movements on domestic and international activities, with reference to infrastructure and transportation needs and safety implications.   

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

McGrath Completes Construction of Newborn Intensive Care Unit at Progress West Hospital in St. Charles County, Missouri


McGrath & Associates has completed construction of a newborn intensive care unit (NICU) within the Childbirth Center at Progress West Hospital in O’Fallon, Missouri. The eight-bed NICU will allow the hospital to care for premature babies born as early as 32 weeks. The architect for the project was Fox Architects.

The new NICU features eight newborn intensive care beds throughout a special care nursery, procedure room, and baby nursery. Each bed includes state-of-the-art technology in a unique, family-centered layout with accommodations for an overnight guest. The space was completed with high-end finishes, with features such as brightly colored accent walls, glass-fronted maple supply cabinets, and frosted-glass and maple room dividers between the suites.
McGrath implemented strict isolation and infection prevention measures during construction to ensure a clean and safe environment for patients and staff.

McGrath & Associates is a 100 percent employee-owned general contractor and construction management firm specializing in commercial, health care, industrial, institutional and pharmaceutical construction projects since 1983.

Allegro Expands Senior Living Business with New Community in Richmond Heights, MO


Allegro Senior Living, a leader in managing senior communities and St. Louis based company with headquarters in Clayton, began construction on its 12th community. In conjunction with IronRock Investments, Allegro jointly funded the project located on Bellevue Avenue near the SSM Health St. Mary’s Hospital campus. This will be the 1st community in St. Louis for Allegro who operates 11 other properties throughout Florida and Kentucky. The Richmond Heights community will contain 87 units within 91,000 square feet offering premier Assisted Living and Memory Care services to the area’s seniors. First occupancy is expected in the fall of 2018. When complete, Allegro anticipates creating 80 permanent jobs in addition to 75 construction jobs to build the project.

Allegro is a well-respected leader and expert in the senior living industry with a long-standing reputation of efficiently managing senior communities. Allegro’s most recent development is opening this fall in Winter Park, Florida near Orlando. The company is proud to have a development opportunity in the St. Louis area, home to its headquarters.

“We are grateful to Lawrence Group, IronRock Investments and Commerce Bank, who helped make this project possible,” says Larry Schiffer, Chairman & CEO of Allegro Senior Living. “Allegro has a strong brand in senior living and we are proud to finally introduce our brand to the home of our corporate headquarters.”

Lawrence Group, also headquartered in St. Louis, is providing architectural design and construction management services.

The new 4-story Allegro will primarily cater to Assisted Living residents with the 4th floor dedicated to Memory Care services. Luxury accommodations will include a bistro and bar with outdoor balcony dining, stadium theater, fitness center, full service salon & spa and therapy services. The community will represent the latest best practices in programming and design, following up on the successful resort-style approach of other Allegro communities.

Financing for the project was provided by Commerce Bank.

Work Begins On 103,000 Square Foot Facility In Union, MO


The Korte Company has begun working on a new manufacturing facility in Union, Missouri for Spray Dynamics, a subsidiary of Heat and Control, Inc. The 13.3-acre site will soon be home to Heat and Control’s newest facility. Washington Engineering & Architecture (WEA) was named the project’s architect and engineer.

Since 1952, Spray Dynamics has developed applications for a wide range of products, both food and non-food, and has served the snack industry since 1970. Spray Dynamics engineers and manufactures applications for oils, seasonings, vitamins, tack and release agents, chocolate, syrups and candy coatings, anti-oxidants, polishing wax, and anti-clumping agents.

The new facility offers the latest in manufacturing capabilities, testing rooms and includes a trial center able to provide comprehensive testing capabilities across the company’s wide range of products. A temperature control system is capable of simulating plant conditions during product trials.

The facility is expected to be complete in the fourth quarter of 2017 and will initially employee 50-60 personnel with the ability to expand to over 100 employees.

The Korte Company, founded in 1958, is headquartered in St. Louis, Missouri with offices in Highland, Illinois; Norman, Oklahoma; and Las Vegas, Nevada. The company manages, on average, an excess of $250 million in annual construction volume.

The Korte Company’s project expertise includes building for federal, state and local government agencies as well as the design and construction of healthcare facilities, medical office buildings, warehouse/distribution centers, religious facilities, commercial buildings, schools, recreation centers and office complexes.

Holland Construction Services Breaks Ground on New Apartment Complex in Maplewood, Missouri


Holland Construction Services, Inc. (Holland) recently began work on Sunnen Station Apartments in Maplewood, Missouri. This new $31.5 million apartment complex, being developed by the Sunnen Family, in conjunction with Cozad Commercial Real Estate, will be the first new apartment construction in the city of Maplewood in several years.

The new four-story complex will contain 174 units comprised of studios, 1-bedroom, and 2-bedroom apartments, featuring a variety of floor plans.  The 186,402 square-foot facility will also feature a swimming pool, sun deck, barbeque patio, a sport court, and a gated parking lot.

Forum Studio out of St. Louis, Missouri, is the architect on the project.  Work on the new complex is scheduled to be complete December 2017.

Holland Construction Services is a full-service construction management, general contracting, and design/build firm based in Swansea, IL.