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4900 Middlebury Street
Elkhart, Indiana 46516
T 574.295.3761, F 574.522.1620
andrew@jawagner.com

J.A. Wagner Construction Blog

Andrew Harman

Andrew has more than 16 years of experience in the commercial construction field. Growing up in a construction family, Andrew has always had a passion for building and designing. He earned his bachelor’s degree in 2007 from Purdue University School of Technology in Building Construction Management.

J.A. Wagner Helps Global Link Rev Up for RV Industry Growth

Posted by Andrew Harman on Aug 21, 2018 10:12:00 AM

It has been a pleasure to continue our relationship with Global Link Distribution in Elkhart, Indiana. The J.A. Wagner Construction team recently completed a major expansion and renovation project that’s helping the company handle myriad challenges as a result of its vital and rapidly-expanding business.

Global Link Distribution is a leading supplier of OEM products for the RV, manufactured housing, cargo trailer, fencing, and cabinet shop industries. Founded in 2007, Global Link’s products include locksets, fasteners, latches, drawer slides, and cabinet hardware. Innovators at the firm also perform research and development in their quest to provide the highest quality products and customer service to the growing RV industry.

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Topics: Expansion, Elkhart, Indiana, pre-engineered metal buildings

Shield Restraints: Securing a New Addition in Elkhart, Indiana

Posted by Andrew Harman on Jun 14, 2018 9:49:59 AM


J.A. Wagner has completed a 42,875-square-foot production and warehouse space for Shield Restraint Systems, Inc. Located at 3802 Gallatin Way in Elkhart, Indiana, the pre-engineered steel structure is an addition to an existing facility built by our team in 2006. The expansion adds 10,500 square feet of warehouse space with two loading docks and a new 32,375-square-foot temperature-controlled production area.

Shield produces restraints and retraction systems for ATVs, child seats, forklifts, off-road equipment, recreational vehicles, trucks, buses, and airplanes. Around the world, leading vehicle manufacturers, aftermarket distributors, seating providers, and child safety seat manufacturers all trust Shield for quality occupant safety systems and restraints.

This expansion required the installation of some unique equipment, including a 300-ton stamping press with an isolated foundation, five 180-ton horizontal molding presses, one 40-ton molding press, and an overhead bus duct to power the assembly cells.

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Topics: Expansion, Elkhart, Indiana, pre-engineered metal buildings

One Factor Influences Construction Costs the Most

Posted by Andrew Harman on Mar 8, 2018 10:13:00 AM

There are many factors that influence the cost of construction. Some are obvious: land acquisition, permits and construction costs. Then there are the future costs or life-cycle costs to consider: maintenance, repair, replacement—the cost of keeping the facility and its systems up and running.

One of the most effective ways to control construction costs is to establish early involvement on behalf of the owner AND the contractor. This may seem obvious, but under the traditional method of construction delivery, the owner commissions an architect or engineer to prepare drawings and specifications, then separately selects a contractor by negotiation or competitive bidding at a later stage in the project’s development.

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Topics: Design-Build Construction

Center six one five Brings Much-Needed Convention Space to Michiana

Posted by Andrew Harman on Jan 4, 2018 9:40:00 AM

The new Center six one five convention and tradeshow facility in Elkhart, Indiana.

J.A. Wagner is pleased to announce the completion of Center six one five, a state-of-the-art convention center and meeting space located in Elkhart, Indiana. Not only does this facility bring much-needed meeting space to Elkhart, but it also helps realize the dream of late local entrepreneur, Gary Price. He envisioned a space in which local businesses could conduct meetings, trade shows and luncheons without having to travel to South Bend or Chicago. After his passing, Gary’s wife Kim worked closely with our team to construct the facility he had always envisioned.

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Topics: Design-Build Construction, Elkhart, Indiana, Butler

Building A Building On Top Of A Building

Posted by Andrew Harman on Feb 7, 2017 9:25:00 AM


J.A. Wagner Construction designed and built the new 32,300-square-foot facility over top of the existing building.

B&B Molders, Inc. of Mishawaka, Indiana are innovators in plastic injection molding. The company, founded in 1963, has experienced tremendous growth over the years. In 2013, they had a problem. They had outgrown their Mishawaka plant and could not expand their facility on their existing property. The only direction to go was up. 

J.A. Wagner Construction designed and built the new 32,300-square-foot facility over top of the existing building in an effort to help B&B Molders remain completely operational during construction. 

Learn the Single Most Effective Way to Reduce Construction Costs >>>

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Topics: Design-Build Construction, Innovation

Is Your Building’s Roof Ready For Winter?

Posted by Andrew Harman on Dec 16, 2016 8:59:08 AM


Most snow-related building losses typically occur at stepped elevations where blowing snow is carried from an upper roof down to a lower roof.

The winter season is upon us in Northern Indiana and there is no accurate way for us to predict what the winter will bring. If we have a repeat of recent years, there are a few things every building owner should know to prevent a catastrophe from occurring:
  • Heavy and repeated snowstorms can create packed snow and ice conditions resulting in unusual and excessive snow loads of 50 p.s.f. or greater.
  • Blowing and drifting snow can add to these loads
  • Rain-on-snow can cause significant load increases
  • These loads can be in excess of the design capacity of the building and can cause damage, collapse, or at worst, business interruption, injury and death.
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Topics: Design-Build Construction, Butler Manufacturing, snow load, winter

Welch Packaging: Building A Local Economy [VIDEO]

Posted by Andrew Harman on Dec 1, 2016 8:25:00 AM


J.A. Wagner is constructing several pre-engineered steel buildings for Welch Packaging as part of their $16 million plant and machinery investment.

By the end of January—if the weather cooperates—construction will be complete on several new buildings for Welch Packaging in Elkhart, Indiana. Design-build construction began in May on what will be a $16 million plant and machinery investment to expand Welch Packaging’s capabilities.

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Topics: Design-Build Construction, Butler Manufacturing, pre-engineered metal buildings, Welch Packaging

6 Reasons Why Now Is The Time To Build Your Project

Posted by Andrew Harman on Nov 10, 2016 9:11:00 AM


J.A. Wagner recently completed this 200,000-square-foot trailer manufacturing facility for Universal Trailer, located in Bristol, Indiana. Universal Trailer manufactures Featherlite, Haulmark and Wells Cargo trailers, among others.

A recent Consensus Construction Forecast from The American Institute of Architects’ (AIA) projected that construction spending has risen in 2016 and that 2017 could show an additional 6.7% gain for commercial (non-residential) construction. This survey of the nation’s leading construction forecasters also suggests that some sectors will top that—for instance, commercial/industrial (7.5%) and office space (8.8%).

Many owners have put off the decision the build over the past few years as the economy was weakened and the November election was creating a lot of uncertainty. Now that the economy has rebounded, we have seen an increase in construction starts and are listening to owners and their rationale for moving forward.

Here are six reasons to consider new construction in the coming months:

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Topics: Design-Build Construction, construction spending, new construction

J.A. Wagner Earns Two Prestigious Butler® Awards

Posted by Andrew Harman on Oct 27, 2016 9:17:00 AM


Spheros, a global leader in the development and manufacturing of engine-independent HVAC systems for commercial vehicles, has a new 135,000-square-foot Butler pre-engineered building in Elkhart, Indiana.

For more than 44 years, J.A. Wagner has provided quality construction solutions for our clients in every shape, size and configuration. Custom construction is our specialty, and we recognize no limits when it comes to our client’s needs and satisfaction. We enjoy engineering solutions to the challenges that our clients’ face. Light or heavy industrial buildings, hi-tech manufacturing facilities, corporate office buildings and religious facilities are just a few of the projects found in our portfolio. We pride ourselves in teaming up with clients to identify their needs, and to construct facilities that will serve them not only today, but well into the future.

So, it is no surprise that 33 years ago, we become a Butler Builder®. That makes J.A. Wagner an important part of the largest network of construction professionals in the world—a full-service commercial construction firm that offers capabilities from construction to complete turnkey design-build services. And, we are proud to announce that J.A. Wagner was recently presented with two prestigious awards from Butler Manufacturing at its recent annual sales meeting.

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Topics: design-build, Butler Manufacturing, Awards, pre-engineered metal buildings

Getting Better With Age and A Whole Lot of Continuous Education

Posted by Andrew Harman on Sep 7, 2016 11:00:00 AM


Diversity is paramount in an ever-changing industry and our company is fortunate to have the best of both worlds. J.A. Wagner Construction is a blend of young, ambitious builders and those with more experience who have “seen and done it all.” Not only does our company have some of the most experienced project managers who have helped grow our community since 1972, but we’ve ushered in a new era of team members who bring to the company the latest in building technology and advancement in skills.We enjoy bridging the gap and learning from each other.

A sure recipe for continued success is our lifelong passion for learning. How do we do it?

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Topics: continuous improvement in construction, team

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