Bush Construction Company, Inc. has made huge strides since the firm was founded in 2008, going from zero to $18 million in revenue in its first full year of business. As a general contractor, design-builder and professional construction manager, its team members have worked on a range of industrial, educational, government and commercial projects in the Quad-Cities and throughout the Midwest.
According to A.J. Loss, president, the company has been awarded more than $60 million in projects to date. What makes its growth so exceptional is the fact that it took place during a nationwide recession with an accompanying construction industry slump.
Bush Construction has succeeded in its endeavors through a collaborative approach to business, Loss states. "Through collaborative relationships with our clients, designers and subcontractors, we have established an unconventional approach to the world of commercial building construction," he says. "This high degree of collaboration is only possible in an atmosphere of mutual trust and respect."
The company believes strongly in the power of teamwork. "By embracing a collaborative environment with our project teams," Loss notes, "we have been able to deliver some very complex projects on time, under budget and with happy clients."
Turning an Urban Brownfield into a Green Success
Bush Construction maintained its early growth while handling a number of philanthropic projects, spending considerable time and resources in the community. Recently, it was honored during the 23rd annual Hard Hat awards presentation, receiving the Collette Hinrichsen Award for Philanthropy for its contributions to the Rock Island Economic Growth Corporation (RIEGC).
Bush Construction worked with RIEGC on the Jackson Square project, a brownfield area in downtown Rock Island, IL, that was turned into an attractive 30-unit apartment complex. RIEGC, the owner of the property, attained the necessary funding for the project. Bush Construction acted as the construction manager on the project, and EnviroNET, Inc., served as the environmental contractor.
“The Illinois Oil Products warehouse used to operate on the property,” says Ryan Schertz, Bush Construction's superintendent in charge of the project, who served as on-site manager for all activities on the site. “The work took about 15 months. The land had environmental issues. It was a brownfield site with multiple tanks and lots of oil everywhere. There were tanks within the building as well as underground. We had chemical infiltration throughout the site that needed to be remediated.”
According to Rob Davis, Bush Construction project manager, the environmental concerns were the No. 1 challenge. “Remedial action was carried out while construction was taking place, so both endeavors had to be coordinated for greatest efficiency,” Davis states. "EnviroNET, Inc., provided the remedial action plan, collected soil samples, did the modeling, and determined how the contaminated soil might migrate. Rainwater can drive contaminants deeper into the ground. The pollutants travel below the grade and along the bedrock, and can be forced into more porous materials along the way."
Thorough documentation of the contamination was needed. Based on the models provided by EnviroNET, plans for the ecological renewal of the property were approved by the federal and state Environmental Protection Agency.
"The contractor hauled off the contaminated soil, and work performed by Bush was scheduled around that contractor. This closely coordinated teamwork allowed the project to proceed at a steady, efficient pace," Davis says. "When the project was done, we received a clean bill of health for the land. The EPA confirmed that no further action was required."
As part of the project, EnviroNET was required to pump the underground tanks dry, rendering them harmless, and then fill them with a flowable grout material. The site also included cisterns. For those, the walls were removed to below ground level and the cisterns were packed with sand and left in place.