Case Studies

Alpine Plumbing Inc.

Utilizing Experience and Technology

Steve Rudesill, the third-generation owner and vice president of Alpine Plumbing Inc. (Alpine), has been working for the business since 1994. “I was one of the first apprentices here,” chuckles Rudesill. “I eventually worked my way up to becoming vice president and one of six owners.”
Alpine has grown significantly since Rudesill’s days as an apprentice. “We started out as a two-man operation in 1975,” says Rudesill. “Now we’re one of the largest plumbing contractors in the state.”Alpine Plumbing Inc.

Alpine’s 70 employees operate out of a central office in Brookfield, Wis., where the team’s master plumbers and the remaining experienced technicians put their plumbing know-how to work. Alpine travels throughout Wisconsin, Illinois and Iowa providing commercial, industrial and residential clients with the team’s installation skills for new construction, retrofits, specialty green-built projects repairs and remodel services. To boot, Alpine’s service technicians are available all day, every day, should clients encounter system problems. The company also offers a full-service approach to plumbing solutions, and operates along every phase of a project – from conception and design to commissioning.

Leading Services for a Diverse Portfolio

Alpine utilizes the latest technology to provide design solutions for clients with both foresight and efficiency. The company’s engineering department works with building information modeling (BIM) software to construct layouts, as the technology offers accuracy and easier collaboration, resulting in a finished project that is cost-effective and delivered on schedule. “Our system allows us to break down a job at every phase,” says Rudesill. “We’re able to calculate whether we’re losing money on a bid and balance everything out.”

The company is also able to serve different functions for different projects. On the industrial end, Alpine offers pipe fabrication, special process piping and equipment installation, as well as quality system design and installation. The commercial division has performed design and installation work for a variety of businesses and organizations, including bank, offices, schools, retail operations, restaurants and medical facilities. The team offers decades of combined experience and guarantees that each project meets individual needs of businesses, as well as local codes and compliance orders.

The team’s expertise doesn’t stop there. Alpine also performs residential services for homes of all shapes and in sizes from 30-story condominium buildings to single-family homes. The design team works with clients and contractors to create aesthetic and functional spaces for any home. The company works with a network of fine distributors, offering fixtures and faucets for kitchens and bathrooms alike.

Brilliant Dexterity

Rudesill and his team have completed several memorable projects in the last few years. “We worked on the University Club Towers in Milwaukee, a 36-story condominium,” says Rudesill. “We also recently completed The Moderne, a 30-story apartment and condominium building.” Working with contractors and distributors, Alpine designed and installed a complex plumbing system to serve 53 private units, a health club, a catering kitchen and more. Other recent projects include additional residential buildings, commercial spaces and surgical centers.

Alpine is also expanding the team’s capabilities to offer more services to clients. “We’re getting into heating and boiler work,” explains Rudesill. “We’re also adding refrigeration work to our capabilities.”

Rudesill goes on to explain that working with the Plumbers Union Local 75 (Local 75) has been key in the company’s growth. “Steve Breitlow has been a great contact for business growth,” says Rudesill, who reveals that Local 75 has helped Alpine make important connections with other companies, which have added value to projects, some acting as subcontractors when additional labor or outside capabilities are necessary.

Alpine’s connections through Local 75 have become increasingly important to the business, especially in the recent economic slump. “Business has been slow,” says Rudesill. “The construction industry is in a rut because people are hesitating to spend money.”

According to Rudesill, credit has been harder to secure and banks are tightening the purse strings. Many contractors aren’t meeting the right numbers, making loan procurement more difficult across the board. “We need a line of credit through the banks,” explains Rudesill. “If the banks get scared and won’t lend to us, we can’t work.”

The market is making a slow turnaround, but Rudesill is looking forward to getting back to growth. “I’d like to get back up to 100 employees, where we used to be,” he explains. “For now I’m trying to maintain what I have.” Rudesill’s cautious optimism is keeping the business in check. Alpine may be running lean, but the team is still going strong.

Alpine continues to do what the team does best: providing quality plumbing service and installation. Clients can rest assure that, when working with Alpine, projects are completed on time and to individual specifications thanks to a staff that offers decades of experience, as well as an attitude of helpful professionalism. Rudesill takes great pride in Alpine’s team.

Rudesill and the crew have built partnerships and a reputation in the business secure enough to endure any economic climate, and the team is prepared to uphold such a standing. As one of the region’s leading plumbing contractors, Alpine Plumbing Inc. will continue to provide top-of-the-line products and services for contractors and private individuals alike.

Published on: March 5, 2013


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