Case Studies

Emmitsburg Glass Company Inc.

A Bullet-proof Dedication to Service and Safety

Emmitsburg Glass Company Inc. (EGC) was started in 1988 by four brothers and a brother-in-law, operating out of the Emmitsburg, Md., garage of co-founder Greg Reaver. During the first few years the company did subcontracted home-improvement jobs, but soon it expanded to be a full-service glass and glazing contractor.

EGC eventually generated the business to precipitate the move from the garage into its current 53,000-square foot office, and management hasn’t looked back. The company – run by Greg and Sheridan (Dan), two of the original brothers – employs 88 people and generates between $18 and $20 million a year. The brothers attribute this to a diversified business that can meet and self-perform nearly any glass or glazing need.

EGC is technically a building envelope enclosure company, but a single phrase doesn’t do justice to the variety of services that the company performs. “We self-perform mostly all there is, including work installation and fabrication of glass, store fronts, curtainwalls, doors, windows, composite panels walls, louvers, and bullet-proof glazing,” according to Greg. EGC has worked on some of the most high-profile construction projects in Maryland, and is poised to become one of the most dominant forces in the industry.

Commitment to Transparent Safety Measures

EGC serves the entire Mid-Atlantic region, but its customers are located mostly in Baltimore, Md., Washington, D.C., and throughout Northern Virginia. The company has a total of 25 accounts, and 80 percent of the work it does comes from repeat customers. The wide range of services it offers, according to its web site, includes engineering, fabrication and installation of architectural aluminum and glass systems, aluminum composite and steel panel systems, bullet and glass resistant glazing systems, and fixed and operable aluminum window systems for the exterior facades of commercial and residential buildings. Additionally, the EGC operates a residential service center that can handle the installation, replacement and maintenance of storm doors and windows, show and tub enclosures, wood stove glass, custom mirrors, custom furniture tops, insulated glass units, heavy equipment glass and tempered, lexan and flexiglass.

Despite quickly incorporating the newest and most complex technology and offering such a variety of services, EGC boasts a near-perfect safety record. Safety is of utmost important to both Reaver brothers, so they have implemented a number of policies to ensure their company maintains a good rating. EGC has a safety committee, a safety officer designated to every project, and management evaluates supervisors based on their commitment to a safe work environment.

In addition, the company holds drug screenings, toolbox safety talks, jobsite inspections, as well as programs for fall protection, safety incentives, and early return-to-work. EGC, for its ability to clearly see the benefits of workplace safety, has been recognized with a “Safety Saves with IWIF [Injured Workers Insurance Fund] Premier Partnership Award.” This came with a monetary reward, which management promptly gave back to its employees in the form of a “Safety Bonus” thanking them for their commitment, and acknowledging that the business would be nothing without them.

The Glass is Always Half-Full

“The company mainly works on commercial projects, college campuses, hospitals, condos, hotels, mixed use retail and office buildings,” according to Greg. In 2007 the company glazed three of Maryland’s Top 50 construction projects, according to The Daily Record, and those jobs included the number one overall: Harbor East, a multi-use building located on Baltimore’s Inner Harbor that offers shopping, dining, entertainment, residential apartments, as well as two 12-story hotels. At just over a million square feet, and constructed at a cost of $232 million, it’s one of the most impressive developments in the city, and a major project for which only the best glass companies in the area got considered.

In addition, EGC has worked on University of Maryland’s Comcast Arena, the Howard Country General Hospital, the Baltimore Marriott Waterfront, as well as a number of high-profile office buildings, including the Canton Crossing Office Tower.

A notable recent project EGC completed was on the United Medical Center in Washington, D.C. According to Greg, “The project completely removed the existing 40-year-old curtainwall and replaced it with a new YKK insulated system, all while the hospital was occupied. Structural steel was installed on all floors to allow for curtainwall installation. The contractor and subs developed a special schedule to assist UMC with moving patients during construction.”

Despite these showcase projects, EGC has had to weather its share of the economic downturn. However, the Reaver brothers see the economy getting better in the next few years, and as a result they are planning to expand. “We’re looking actually out of the area,” according to Greg.

EGC has successfully navigated market changes, foreign competition, and a tough economy during its tenure. It has already become a major force in the industry around the Maryland/Virginia/District of Columbia area. With diversified services and an extensive portfolio of projects that reflect the firm’s quality, there’s little that can stop Emmitsburg Glass Company from achieving its goals.

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