That vision was of a spacious, comfortable, state-of-the art green office space, both for McKinstry and its tenants: McKinstry Station. Standing in the way of that vision was decades of neglect, a building envelope that had never been designed for heating and cooling, and a spot on the list of the National Register of Historic places.
CHICAGO -- On March 1, CONTRACTOR Magazine’s Twitter page (twitter.com/contractormag) hit 17,000 followers. We, the editorial staff, thought that milestone made for a good opportunity not just to thank our followers, but to talk to all our readers about our expanded digital offerings, and how the world of business-to-business publishing is changing.
CALGARY, AB. — Jamie Whitehead, President of Cooper Plumbing & Heating Ltd., has only had his own shop up and running for about three years, but he’s already a two-time winner of Lochinvar’s VIP Installation Showcase.
It has been a difficult five years for the public sector. In many parts of America, the Great Recession shrank the tax base to the point where towns and villages were forced to cut spending by any means.
SPRING, TEXAS — Milton Frank Plumbing has been serving the area north of Houston for more than 28 years. For the past seven, Patrick Duffy has been working for Milton Frank as a service technician and team leader.
WATERFORD, PA. — Brian Dwyer is a third-generation plumber. His grandfather James founded the company in 1949 with a focus on residential plumbing. In 1979, Dwyer’s father bought the business and set about expanding it and adding excavating services. The company now owns several excavators and attachments, as well as a bulldozer, loaders, rollers and dump trucks. Brian bought the business in turn in 2008.
DALLAS — Luxury and efficiency would seem to sit at opposite ends of the spectrum. Luxury implies a superabundance that verges on wasteful, while efficiency or “eco-friendly” implies either making do with less or going without altogether.
The Museum Tower residential high-rise in downtown Dallas hopes to be a happy marriage of the two. The 42-story, 560-ft. tower is the tallest residential structure to be completed in the city in more than 20 years.
KOHLER, WISC. —In 1883, John Michael Kohler decided to enamel coat one of his rectangular cast-iron basins. He was so happy with the results that he later listed it in his company’s one-page catalog: "Horse Trough/Hog Scalder —when furnished with four legs will serve as a bathtub." And just like that, Kohler Co. entered the plumbing products business.
APPLETON, WISC. —You will never go broke selling beer in Wisconsin. The Stone Cellar Brewpub in Appleton, Wisc., was started in 2004 by the father-and-son team of Tom and Steve Lonsway. The building they bought and renovated dates back to 1858 and was originally used as a brewery —one of the first in the state.
GLENSIDE, PA. — Arcadia University located in the Philadelphia suburbs has been through plenty of changes since its founding in 1853. It has made the transition from seminary to college to university, while moving twice and changing its name once (from Beaver College). It now serves more than 4,000 students pursuing more than 80 different fields of study.
SOUTHAMPTON, MASS. —Jim Patterson has been the sole owner of Orchard Valley Heating and Cooling for the past eight years. Working alongside his two sons, Patterson has made a name for his company throughout Western Massachusetts, Southern Vermont and Northern Connecticut by specializing in high-efficiency heating and cooling systems. He is NATE certified in six categories of HVAC service and installation, has six mechanical licenses from two states and has won a handful of RPA Showcase Awards.
For all the advantages mobile computing can bring to a contracting business, mobile devices are notoriously a) expensive and b) fragile. Meanwhile the jobsite can be an unforgiving environment, and technicians can be notoriously rough on even the most durable tools.
CONTRACTOR magazine staff started to browse through old magazine issues of The Contractor, Plumbing and Heating Business magazine, and The Ladle, The Business Journal for Master Plumbers and Heating Contractors of New York State. Browse vintage ads from some of the industry's current plumbing manufacturers.
Grainger prides itself on sustainability, which is part of the company’s corporate social responsibility, and this distribution center is a testament to that: it is the world’s largest LEED platinum certified facility for commercial interiors.