Four St. Louis NECA contractor projects earn AGC Keystone Award honors

KEYSTONE FINALISTS: Guarantee Electrical is being honored for its work on the Benson Hill Crop Accelerator in St. Louis as well as the Nestle Bloomfield Expansion in Bloomfield, Mo. (left). PayneCrest Electric is being recognized for its work on the Benson Hill for Seneca Realty in St. Louis and the Mizzou NextGen Precision Health Institute in Columbia, Mo.(right) – Photos courtesy of Compass Communications

Four projects by St. Louis Chapter of the National Electrical Contractor Association (NECA) contractors will be vying for awards in construction excellence given by the Associated General Contractors (AGC) of Missouri.

Guarantee Electrical Co. and PayneCrest Electric, Inc., both members of NECA and the Electrical Connection partnership, each had two projects named finalists for the 2022 AGC Construction Keystone Awards. St. Louis NECA partners with the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 1 to form the Electrical Connection.

The Guarantee projects named finalists include:
Benson Hill Crop Accelerator in St. Louis. The 47,000-square-foot Crop Accelerator repurposed a warehouse to give Benson Hill a “more than 20-fold expansion in testing capacity.” It includes 24 cutting-edge growth chambers that serve as miniature labs of varying sizes, seed prep areas, a front office, and break room – all requiring a complex and robust electrical infrastructure.

Nestle Bloomfield Expansion in Bloomfield, Mo., a fast-track expansion for Nestle-Purina’s cat litter plant in Bloomfield, Mo. It required electrical/communications installations in a 100-foot-by-100-foot work zone inside a building only 25 percent complete and swarming with multiple trades. The addition is fully automated. Nestle-Purina notes it is the first cat litter facility in its network to self-manufacture its own packaging.

The PayneCrest finalist projects are:
Benson Hill for Seneca Realty in St. Louis, a new 160,000-square-foot, four-story facility housing agriculture lab areas, climate-controlled seed storage and growing areas on the campus of the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center. The building features flexible research laboratories, shared workspaces, and additional open common elements such as lounges, fitness, yoga and break space designed to encourage collaborative engagement and to improve the quality of the work environment beyond the laboratory bench. The project earned a 2022 NECA Project Excellence Award from the National Electrical Contractors Association. See related story below.

Mizzou NextGen Precision Health Institute in Columbia, Mo., a 265,000-square-foot, five-story precision health facility providing space for more than 60 principal investigators. The NextGen Precision Health Initiative helps Mizzou translate fundamental research from laboratories to effective treatments and devices, which will benefit all Missourians as well as the rest of the world.

Since 1997, when the AGC Keystone Awards competition was launched, more than 100 Electrical Connection member contractor projects have been honored. The prestigious construction awards program salutes projects for safety, proficiency in overcoming challenges and the quality of delivery, including maintaining budget and schedule.

Winners of the 25th anniversary Keystone Awards will be announced and celebrated at the AGC’s Construction Awards Gala scheduled for Thursday, Nov. 3 at the River City Casino & Hotel in St. Louis. For more information visit,

The Electrical Connection partnership provides safe and reliable commercial, industrial and residential electrical construction, maintenance, repair and replacement services across Missouri, the nation and the world. It is an important resource for business and civic leadership for new technology, including disruptive technologies, advancing electrical and communication infrastructure. Learn more at

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PROJECT EXCELLENCE: Congrats to Guarantee Electrical Co. for earning a national award for its work on the Benson Hill Crop Accelerator in St. Louis shown here. The design/build project earned a 2022 NECA Project Excellence Award from the National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA). Guarantee was saluted for transforming a warehouse into Benson Hill’s 47,000-square-foot Crop Accelerator. The firm creatively engineered and installed a robust electrical infrastructure to power numerous grow chambers and supportive bio-science space. It also re-sequenced work to overcome a delay in critical switchgear, delivering the project on-time, under budget with no injuries. The award will be presented to Guarantee on Oct. 17 at the NECA national convention in Austin, Texas.


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