Schomburg & Schomburg Construction Inc.
- Written by: Tom Faunce
- Produced by: Joe Atwood
- Estimated reading time: 4 mins
With a reputation for professionalism, performance and integrity, Schomburg & Schomburg Construction Inc. has established itself as a premier full-service construction manager, design-builder and general contractor. Headquartered in Danville, Illinois, Schomburg & Schomburg specializes in construction services for a broad range of projects, including churches, private educational, financial, industrial and manufacturing facilities.
Originally founded as Schomburg & Bailey in 1979 by Richard Schomburg and John Bailey, the company began by focusing on millwright services and machine repair work. After several years, the company entered the general construction market and experienced rapid growth until Schomburg and Bailey decided to part ways as Bailey became more interested in the residential market while Schomburg opted to remain in the industrial and commercial sectors. In 1981, Barbara Schomburg bought out Bailey and became majority owner. “We are very proud to remain a Small Business Association-certified Woman-Owned Small Business,” says Julie Buesing, president and CEO of Schomburg & Schomburg. “We have an amazing dedicated staff and many long-term employees that are experienced, educated, trained and focused on safely delivering our projects to our clients on time and on budget.”
For a majority of its existence, Schomburg & Schomburg maintained a geographical footprint within 90 miles of Danville. In the past few years, the company has expanded its reach throughout the entire state of Illinois and has even entered markets across state lines into Indiana. “The expansion has been going pretty well,” shares Buesing. “Last year we completed a wastewater project for the Vermillion County Jail in Indiana.”
Buesing adds that many of the projects that cross state lines are grant-based, which creates the opportunity for engineering firms to handle logistics such as obtaining permits. This allows Schomburg & Schomburg to concentrate solely on performing the construction services. “The clients have all the permits and grant stuff in place,” Buesing explains. “They provide all the design, so we are just bidding on the installation.”
Other projects that Schomburg & Schomburg have recently been involved in include the Julius W. Hegeler II Advanced Technology Center for Danville Area Community College. This job included constructing 10,000 square feet of classroom and lab space that will provide training in mechatronics and robotics. The project also utilizes geothermal and solar energy aspects. “We do a lot of work with schools,” says Buesing. “Doing this kind of project is nice because it’s an addition to the college, so we have established a nice relationship with them.”
In maintaining sustainability and energy efficiency in the industry, Schomburg & Schomburg has been working to upgrade numerous facilities using sustainability methods, such as replacing brick siding with energy-efficient paneling. “We rely on advances in technology such as soft-dig hydro excavation and dust and contamination control products to make installations of materials in all environments more efficient and clean,” says Buesing. “We also use more efficient equipment by using lightweight but strong materials and even equipment movers to relocate heavy equipment and manufacturing/production-related items on finished surfaces, such as epoxy, tile and laminated floors in high-finish areas.”
A bright future for skilled technicians
Schomburg & Schomburg is in high demand and Buesing says that one of the biggest challenges the company faces is manpower. “Locally there are a lot of long-term projects so you have to have a lot of work to keep people busy if you want them to stick around,” says Buesing. “We rely heavily on the support of our local trades unions to supply trained manpower in the desired quantity based on need.” The company also works with Danville Area Community College to recruit workers to enter the carpenter and millwright apprenticeship programs.
With the applications of new technologies and education available, Buesing feels the amount of skilled workers in the industry will begin to increase over the next 10 years. “We’re doing some work for Pepsi Co. and Chewy Granola Bars that involves a lot of high-tech applications that many people are able to train for at the community college level,” he says.
Throughout the years, Schomburg & Schomburg has relied on the relationships it has established with clients, subcontractors and suppliers for its ability to thrive in the industry, especially through lean times. “We’ve had a lot of repeat clients over the years,” says Buesing. “All of our clients rely on us to do things right and do things safe. We also rely on the support of our suppliers to deliver the required items, such as fabricated steel products, rebar, mesh, concrete products, fuel and many other items to the right location at the right time.”
With a wealth of knowledge and experience in the industry, Schomburg & Schomburg will remain focused on completing infrastructure and millwright work, which has increased over the last few years. The company has also started incorporating the younger employees into training programs in food safety awareness and hygiene education as the company often completes work for food processing facilities. With the next generation of workforce and management looking strong, Schomburg & Schomburg Inc. will remain a leader in the Illinois construction industry.
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