Archive for August, 2015

Tip for Building Efficiency

Monday, August 31st, 2015

Ventilation air can constitute a large portion of an overall energy bill. In some buildings, it can be as high as 30% of the cooling load and 60% of the heating load. Are you finding your energy bills to be too high?

One way Egan can help you reduce this cost is to employ Demand-Controlled Ventilation (DCV) through your building automation system. A DCV system can be retrofitted to a building or utilized in new construction.

A DCV system uses carbon-dioxide sensors located within the building. These sensors are used to estimate the minimum ventilation requirements needed for occupants. If carbon dioxide levels rise—and they will as more people enter the space—the ventilation system opens and allows fresh air to enter for proper ventilation.

Utilizing a DCV system yields a huge potential for energy savings, especially in building zones where occupancy levels vary widely. When occupancy levels are low, the outdoor ventilation rate can be reduced to minimal levels and eliminate the need to condition additional outdoor air. Building zones such as auditoriums and conference rooms are prime examples.

If you’re looking to lower your energy bills, contact your representative to see how Egan can help.

A Tradition of Paying it Forward

Friday, August 28th, 2015

So much is changing in the construction industry, but some values never quite lose their luster. Notions like family, community, and charity, for example, are as prevalent today as they were in 1945 when Egan Company was founded.

For the past 70 years, Egan has been actively involved in the community by rallying employees to support generous causes, and the first half of 2015 was no different as employees collaborated with Twin Cities-based Hearts & Hammers for the thirteenth time and participated once again in a local food-packing competition through the non-profit, Matter.

IMGP2814 2006 Hearts & Hammers 044New Life to an Old Home

“Remodel” is a word that gets thrown around a lot at Egan. Usually, it pertains to a commercial project. But last May, Egan employees partnered with Hearts & Hammers for a different kind of remodel; one that would transform the house of an elderly Minneapolis resident.

There were more than 40 Egan employees in attendance, including Egan Leaders, and field and office personnel. We spent the morning and afternoon fixing up and repainting the house. The house had survived years of wear-and-tear, including a fire on the front porch years ago.

“This year was one of the first that we’ve had an all-Egan team, so it was great to see everyone participate and work together to help out someone in need,” said Jim Malecha, Egan Company President & CEO.

A fresh coat of paint took off years from the house and garage’s façade, and the backyard is now transformed with an all-new walking path, a reinforced deck, and a neat little sitting area inside a newly refurbished garden.

“I’ve been here 47 years and I just can’t believe it’s my house,” said Katherine, homeowner.

DSC_0497Packing Meals for Healthy Competition

A food-packing competition was held through Matter, a local nonprofit, to support local children and families in need of nutritious meals.

Eight teams of Egan employees raced to pack meals, and the competition was fierce, with teams rushing to arrange and seal boxes as quickly as possible within a time limit. When the final tallies were counted, the winning team came out on top after packing 81 total boxes.

“This event was for a good cause to help provide food for kids in food deserts in the Twin Cities,” said Nick Ravetto, Egan Company Safety Coordinator. “It also brought together people at Egan for a great team-building event.”

Ninety-five Egan employees attended the event and packed 695 boxes, which amounted to 3,475 meals. Quenton Marty, President of Matter, said the boxes Egan packed would provide over a week and half of meals to students in local free lunch programs.

The group (and individual) efforts of Egan volunteers have been a lasting source of pride throughout all seventy years of the company’s existence. Each day brings more opportunities, and each day we hope to continue our rich tradition of supporting the local community.

Progress for Vital Research

Friday, August 28th, 2015

Hormel InstituteSouthern Minnesota is a recognized leader in providing top quality healthcare with the Mayo Clinic Health System and various medical research facilities scattered throughout. Nietz Electric, a brand of Egan Company, is at the forefront in providing electrical work to the area, including a recent project for Hormel Institute’s cancer research facility in Austin, Minn.

The Hormel Institute is a biomedical research center focused on the prevention and control of cancer and other chronic diseases. It is funded by the Hormel Foundation and an official research unit for the University of Minnesota.

Nietz and McGough Construction began a 74,000-square-foot addition to the existing facility in October 2014, enabling the Hormel Institute to become a part of the emerging Bioscience Corridor in Southern Minnesota. The expansion will provide new facilities for elite scientists and doctors to continue cancer research.

This project includes a three-story addition that adds 20 state-of-the-art cancer research laboratories, each ran by individual doctors. The expansion doubles the number of available labs and is also LEED Gold Certified.

“We have extensive experience on healthcare-related projects, so this project is right in our wheel house,” said Bob Gransee, Nietz Project Manager. “Each research lab has its own electrical panel so each can be an independent, stand-alone research lab with its own staff and funding source.”

Low-voltage electrical will be completed, including fire alarm, voice/data, and security systems. All work is also being completed while the existing building is currently occupied, making some elements of the project difficult.

“It has been challenging for us to perform shutdowns—in order to tie new panels into the existing circuits—while still having the building in full operation,” said Dean Hogstad, Nietz Foreman.

The project is scheduled to be completed in November 2015. In order to meet this deadline, Nietz prefabricated many elements of the electrical infrastructure to save time and money.

Hormel InstituteNietz was also awarded a 250-seat auditorium and multifunction room on the same campus. This lecture hall will become the new Live Learning Center and will feature up-to-date communication technology for broadcasting and online conferencing. The goal is to provide a place for researchers to participate in presentations and discussions with other scientists from anywhere in the world.

The Hormel Foundation, Mayo Clinic, and University of Minnesota are collaborating in order to make this Bioscience Corridor a reality for the State. Focusing on bioscience and medical research helps to spur economic growth in other major Minnesota cities, like Rochester or Austin, and attract a variety of potential employees to the area.

Core Project Team: McGough Construction, The Hormel Foundation, Mayo Clinic, University of Minnesota

Egan Services Performed: Electrical infrastructure, low-voltage electrical, fire alarm, voice/data, and security systems. 

Egan Expands Reach in Southern Minnesota

Thursday, August 27th, 2015

In an effort to enhance market position as a provider of electrical and systems integration in Southern Minnesota, Egan Company acquired Austin, Minn.-based Kestner Electric in July 2015.

“Kestner Electric and Egan Company have a strong relationship through the National Electrical Contractors Association and Local Union IBEW 343,” said Jeff Young, Vice President of Nietz Electric, a brand of Egan Company. “Kestner [Electric] will help Egan expand the ability to provide high levels of service to customers in a wider region of Southern Minnesota.”

With this strong relationship, Egan and Kestner Electric will work together to offer single-source expertise to Kestner Electric customers, which may include UL508A panel construction, mechanical, millwrights, electrical construction, low voltage technology installation, and other building systems.

KevinKestner_082015Kestner Electric has built its business on reputation and long-term commitment to assisting various customers achieve their objectives. With Egan, we can serve customers even better.

– Kevin Kestner, Former Kestner Electric Co-Owner

Valuing a Trusted Partnership

Wednesday, August 26th, 2015

DSC_0708_editAnoka-Hennepin School District #11 (A-H) is one of the largest in Minnesota, encompassing 45 schools and close to 39,000 students (or about 5% of total public school enrollment in the state). For the past 27 years, Egan Company has been the district’s sole integrator of building automation systems.

Building automation allows owners to control nearly all aspects of a building that regulate energy usage, affecting everything from operational costs to carbon footprint. As new technological features have evolved, Egan has worked with A-H to bring each school facility to the next level of energy management sophistication, dating back to when the technology first surfaced in the early 1980s.

But 27 years is a very long time to be in business with a single contractor. How can this kind of relationship endure for so long?

“There has always been a need to manage HVAC systems efficiently,” said Roger Wood, Anoka-Hennepin Schools Maintenance Supervisor. “Egan collaborates with us to help create a healthy classroom environment for students and staff, while at the same time managing our HVAC systems to be very energy conscious.”

Over the years, Egan has become tremendously hands-on and knowledgeable of A-H’s overall needs, and that reflects in the way we do business. Years of service calls, updates, and maintenance requests have required Egan personnel to look at the big picture to keep A-H’s facilities running smoothly.

“Trust is the key to how we maintain business relationships,” said Tom Addabbo, Egan Company Account Manager. “We continuously show that we are invested in helping the customer achieve his/her goals, and that leads to deep-seated trust over time.”

Deep-seated trust is not fostered overnight, and it can be especially hard to maintain in a public school system, where decisions are committee-led and opinions are subject to change as new members are elected. But it certainly is possible to achieve, so long as both parties recognize each other’s own vested interest in succeeding, which sometimes means going beyond expectations.

TomAddabboIII_082015It’s our responsibility to respond in a meaningful way when we get called upon to help.

– Tom Addabbo, Egan Company Account Manager

A few years ago, Rum River Elementary was experiencing issues with a converter valve sticking open (causing the building’s boilers to overheat). Gary Schultz, Egan Company Technician, received a call at about 4 p.m. the Wednesday before Thanksgiving. He was about to leave for a holiday dinner.

“Roger [Wood] called me and explained the situation,” said Schultz. “I could have gone home, but I felt it was not the type of problem you leave over a long weekend.”

Schultz pushed back his holiday plans and set out to Rum River Elementary to help fix the valve issue, which was eventually resolved later that night.

DSC_0710_editHis actions that Thanksgiving represent one of many moments where Egan technicians have delivered on a personal commitment to ensuring success for our customers.

“[Egan has] provided us with a high level of expertise and customer service,” said Wood. “Whenever there is an issue Egan responds promptly with technicians who are very knowledgeable and respectful.”

Whether that means working unconventional hours or even addressing issues that weren’t necessarily Egan’s to fix, the goal is to ultimately save the customer costs in energy usage and hassle. For partnerships like this one, there’s much more to performing the service than merely meeting a budget – there’s character, loyalty, flexibility, and reliability. Any construction-related project can turn south quickly if trust isn’t valued, and though you can’t add “trust” on a pricing sheet, it’s as real as any other line item.

Presenting Leafline Labs

Tuesday, August 25th, 2015

In July, Egan Company hosted a networking and information session focused on Egan’s involvement in the development of Leafline Labs. Collaborating with Ryan Companies, Egan provided all mechanical, electrical, and building automation system services for the new facility.

As one of the first facilities of its kind in Minnesota, the project came with a set of unique challenges. Despite this, it was completed on a fast-paced six month timeline. The presentation focused on the solutions developed by Egan and Ryan Companies to ensure the project was a success.

Interested in getting information about future events? Contact us at