Chili Cook-Off 2019

It’s that time of year we all look forward to, the annual Skender Chili Cook-off! We had seven contestants enter with Tim Rogers taking the title for the fourth year in a row! Only 364 days till the next Chili Day!

LinkedIn – Interior Expansion

Well this is awkward. Sorry to post about LinkedIn on YouTube, but check out our latest project and the employee-focused features at the expanded LinkedIn Chicago HQ, in collaboration with Gensler, ESD Global and Avison Young.

Fleet Fields – Lincoln Yards

In partnering once again with Sterling Bay, we recently completed a youth community artificial grass soccer field Fleet Fields in the Lincoln Yards neighborhood! Huge shout out to ForeverLawn, Inc. in the turf installation as well as Ailey Solar Electric, Inc. that will help offset 92% energy at the field.

Vital Proteins – Interior Project

Even more epic interior construction completed by Skender in the West Loop. The latest: Vital Proteins’ new HQ in Fulton Market. Check out the fast-growing health supplement retailer’s new digs.

2019 Summer Eclipse

This year’s Summer Eclipse event saw over 500 attendees and raised $411,000 to benefit Little Wish Foundation and other charities geared towards health, education and wellness—amazing! On behalf of Skender Foundation, thanks again to everyone involved for making an impact.

Volunteer Day 2019

Nearly 100 Skender employees, friends and family volunteered on Saturday, June 22 at Skender’s annual volunteer day to build the bed frames for 50 bunk beds. Through a partnership with Sleep in Heavenly Peace (SHP), the day will benefit 100 children across the Chicago metropolitan area in need of beds.

Esperanza Brighton Park

When a community is in need of a health center, we’re there to build it. By teaming up with local specialty care and community-based organizations, the new Esperanza Brighton Park health center is ready to serve and help unite this southwest side neighborhood. Take a look at our latest project collaboration with JGMA and McNitt Consulting.

Skender is proud to be part of the team behind Chicago’s “Garfield Green” proposal, winner…

Skender is proud to be part of the team behind Chicago’s “Garfield Green” proposal, winner of C40 Cities‘ “Reinventing Cities” global competition to combat #climatechange. “Garfield Green” aims to revitalize 1.5 acres of vacant land in East Garfield Park as sustainable, mixed-income housing and related public uses. Congrats to our innovative teammates Preservation of Affordable Housing, Perkins+Will, dbHMS and TERRA Engineering, Ltd.

Laser Scanning on the Jobsite: The Future of Construction?

Is laser scanning the future of construction? What exactly is laser scanning, and how does it work? Explore these ideas and more with this week’s episode of Future Built, featuring special guest Brent Slawnikowski of FARO Technologies and hosted by Skender Construction Technologist Ben Stocker.

Summit 2019 – BuiltWorlds

This year’s BuiltWorlds Summit Chicago is a can’t-miss event! Skender Chief Design Officer Timothy Swanson will speak on Thursday’s panel, “Optimizing Digital Design in Today’s World,” alongside Christopher Di Iorio of ENGworks, Katherine Darnstadt of LATENT DESIGN, and Brad Lukanic of CannonDesign.

Quick Links

Don’t miss Skender’s presentation, Moving Patient Care Closer to the Patient and Capitalizing on Unused Space, at this year’s HESNI Annual Conference. Jeffrey Janicek (VP, Partner), Timothy Swanson (Chief Design Officer) and Brian Simons (Project Executive, Partner) will delve into how to take advantage of unused retail spaces in the suburban market, how to recognize unused local spaces and benefits of lease and reuse over the cost of new or dedicated healthcare buildings.

“It’s taking a contractor or engineer or architect or designer, all these folks who think…

“It’s taking a contractor or engineer or architect or designer, all these folks who think about things a little differently, and seeing how we can work together in a truly integrated process” – Skender President Justin Brown, speaking about Skender’s fully integrated manufacturing model at today’s Kaplan Institute speaker series talk on real estate development with Keating Crown of Sterling Bay, Chicago Department of Planning and Development Commissioner David Reifman, and moderator Howard Tullman.


We’re thrilled to announce the launch of Skender Foundation’s new website! Thank you Pivot Design for another successful partnership. Check out our new look.

Women In Construction 2019

Hear from just a few of the many hard-working, talented, driven women who work here at Skender and continue to influence our industry.

Feeling grateful to share that Skender has been selected as a finalist for Interior Contractor…

Feeling grateful to share that Skender has been selected as a finalist for Interior Contractor of the Year at the Greater Chicago Food Depository’s Commercial Real Estate Awards. In 2018, with the help of so many great partners, we successfully completed construction on three standout interior office projects in Chicago–HERE Technologies, Sterling Bay and C.H. Robinson. Winners to be announced on March 14!

Is Chicago Still an Architectural Leader?

Is Chicago still producing work that is architecturally relevant? Skender’s Director of Residential Architecture, Angela Spadoni AIA, sits down with Doug Farr, FAIA, LEED AP, CNU-A of Farr Associates Architecture & Urban Design to chat about the past, present and future of architecture in Chicago. Tune into Skender’s first episode of Future Built, our new podcast.

“If you do an open office right, you’re going to have about the same square…

“If you do an open office right, you’re going to have about the same square footage as a traditional office, because you have to have places to put your head down and work, collaborative areas, and a central gathering area” – Skender VP and Partner Clay Edwards shares insight on Chicago’s coolest offices, at today’s Bisnow Chicago State of the Office event.

Chicago State of Office

Tickets are still available for Thursday’s Bisnow Chicago State of Office event! Join us to see Skender VP and Partner Clay Edwards share his thoughts about creative office trends.

Office Wellness Has To Begin Long Before Move-In

When it comes to wellness in the office, there are many design and construction considerations. Skender’s Clay Edwards walks Bisnow readers through the process and several popular wellness options.

Skender Completes First Data Cable-Free HQ for ShopRunner

Skender, serving as interior construction manager, has completed construction of ShopRunner’s first data cable-free HQ at 350 N. Orleans. Kudos to our collaborators Partners by Design and ConopCo Project Management on a successful project!

Skender Promotes Five to Leadership Board

Skender is pleased to announce five key leaders have been promoted to partner. Congratulations Brian Bukowski, Jeffrey Janicek, Joseph Pecoraro, Tim Rogers and Brian Simons!

Skender Advances Five to Senior Positions

We are pleased to announce five promotions to senior positions on our growing operations team! Congratulations to Nestor Acance, Thomas Boehm, Bob Kedzorski, Jeff Reist and Dave Ruzich on your well-deserved new roles.

5 Possible Scenarios For The Future Of Coworking

“In analyzing the likelihood of the growth to continue, industry experts at Newmark Knight Frank and JLL took a deep dive in separate reports into how this sector of commercial real estate is evolving.”

Adoption Leaders 50 List 2018 – BuiltWorlds

We’re excited to share that our very own Shyam Telikicherla was named to BuiltWorlds’ Adoption Leaders 50 List 2018 for his innovative work in VDC/BIM best practices and design model data!

2018 Highlights

2018 was a productive, high-energy year with many highlights. We are thankful for the people we’ve met, projects we’ve built and partnerships we’ve forged. We look forward to continuing this journey with even more to come in 2019.

Skender Completes AZEK Company HQ in Fulton Market

We recently completed interior construction of The AZEK Company’s new headquarters at 1330 W. Fulton thanks to a great collaboration with Harley Ellis Devereaux (HED), ESD (Environmental Systems Design, Inc.) and JLL. Welcome, neighbor!

Elgin Tower: Elgin’s heart beats again

“Contractor Skender and architect Webster Design were determined to save the building, which was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 2002 …”

The ConTechCrew 146: The Flipside of Silicon Valley

Episode 146 of The ConTechCrew: “It’s not a prediction, offsite construction is going to be the future of construction … [Skender] figured out ways to actually take this process and drive down the cost … reduce waste.” Starts at the 52:27 mark.

Skender Foundation End of Year Thank You

Skender Foundation’s successes in 2018 made a big impact and we are grateful for your support. From the execution of our first endowment fund to unprecedented success at our two fundraising events to an effective volunteer day, 2018 raised the bar for our organization.

Chicago Power Women

Looking forward to tomorrow’s Bisnow Chicago Power Women event honoring women in commercial real estate! Tickets are still available. #commercialrealestate #proudsponsor

The Doctor Is in: Healthcare Is the New Retail

“Medical, on the other hand, has seen no shortage of demand, making medical an excellent alternative for retail spaces that otherwise face challenges in attracting long-term, stable tenants.”

Latin School Bridge – Connecting Two Schools

Connecting two schools at different elevations on a tight schedule could be daunting, but thanks to our great partners and project team, we provided Latin School with direct access to the upper school’s new learning commons through a new bridge installation.

Hyatt House Vertical Timelapse

In 18 weeks, we went from foundation and building permit issuance to topping out of Sterling Bay’s new Hyatt House hotel in the West Loop. It couldn’t have been done without our Lean construction approach and great partners.

Skender Core Values – Who We Are

Last week, we showcased our three core values: True Partner, Proactive and Refreshing. They keep us hungry, humble and smart as we revolutionize how the industry builds. Here’s a recap of our core values and what makes Skender who we are.

Refreshing – Skender Core Value

Humbly sharing our experiences and mistakes, valuing new ideas and opinions of each employee, and implementing innovative solutions are ways that we make “refreshing” one of three core values at Skender. There’s no voice too small to be heard.

Proactive – Skender Core Value

We take great pride in our work and stay hungry for new ways to improve, enforcing “proactive” as a critical Skender core value.

Bisnow Multifamily Annual Conference Midwest

The Bisnow Multifamily Annual Conference Midwest is a full day of speakers and networking with the region’s top real estate professionals. Our own Project Executive Joseph Pecoraro will speak about rising material and construction costs. You don’t want to miss this one!

True Partner – Skender Core Value

We believe collaboration, respect, clear communication and open-mindedness are essential ingredients to success. That’s why “true partner” is one of our three core values at Skender. When one succeeds, we all succeed. Stay tuned all week as we release videos highlighting each of our core values.

Skender Volunteer Day 2018

For our annual Volunteer Day, we partnered with Solid Rock Carpenters and Appalachia Service Project to build the wall panels of two homes for families in need. Nearly 100 Skender employees, including friends and family, turned out for a fun day and a great cause! Already looking forward to next year!

BOMA & HCI’s 2018 Real Estate Healthcare Symposium

Join us at this year’s BOMA/Suburban Chicago & Health Care Institute (HCI) Chicago Chapter 2018 Real Estate Healthcare Symposium, where Jenny Han, our own Director of Operations and a health care design expert, will lead a panel on innovations in healthcare real estate.

Jenny will lead the discussion on how innovation plays a key role in a merger or acquisition to promote, improve, and increase a health system’s ability to service their patient population.

Skender Adds AZEK Company HQ to Fulton Market Portfolio

Thrilled to add The AZEK Company to our Fulton Market portfolio! We recently started interior construction of their new HQ space at 1330 W. Fulton in collaboration with Harley Ellis Devereaux (HED), ESD (Environmental Systems Design, Inc.) and JLL.

Skender Foundation : Harvesting Hope 2018

Harvesting Hope is two weeks away! Get your tickets today to support Purple Asparagus, a nonprofit organization that educates children, families and the community about good nutrition. Join us October 18 at Morgan’s on Fulton and the official after party at Federales! #harvestinghope #skendergives #purpleasparagus

Skender Delivers Loyola University Lab

“The facade was built using smart technology in the form of sensors that change the color of the glass according to the sunlight’s intensity. Thus, the glass becomes less transparent at sunset.”

The Next Phase in Office Design is Here

“The changing nature of work and the technologies that drive marketplace competition require the office to be adaptable, comfortable, and able to move fluidly in support of the next project, the next new idea, and the next team created to bring those ideas and projects to life.”

Skender Partners with Solid Rock Carpenters for Annual Volunteer Day

We are excited to partner with SOLID ROCK CARPENTERS for our annual volunteer day! On October 13, we will be building wood wall panels for single-family homes to be shipped to low-income territories chosen by the Appalachia Service Project. The day will take place onsite at Skender’s new advanced manufacturing facility.

Solar Energy Works for Illinois – Monthly Live Webinar Series

You don’t want to miss this one – Skender Senior Project Manager Sean Moran is leading a free webinar tomorrow on net zero construction and how solar energy can pay dividends for the life of your building. Sign up at the link below!

Sean is a LEED Accredited Professional and is Passive House Institute Builder Certified, and has delivered several high performing and sustainable residential and commercial projects in the Chicago area.

Skender Completes Loyola University Chicago Engineering Science Flex Laboratory

Skender recently completed Loyola University Chicago’s Engineering Science Flex Laboratory, a state-of-the-art facility designed to put engineering on display. Our team successfully collaborated with SmithGroup, Elara Engineering and Thornton Tomasetti to complete this unprecedented, tech-forward building for Loyola.

Skender Foundation : Harvesting Hope 2018

Harvesting Hope is one month away! Get your tickets today to support Purple Asparagus, a nonprofit organization that educates children, families and the community about good nutrition. Join us October 18 at Morgan’s on Fulton. #harvestinghope #nutrition #purpleasparagus

2018 Multifamily Executive Conference

Our own Timothy Swanson, chief design officer, will be speaking next week at MFE: Multifamily Executive Conference in Las Vegas.

Learn more about this exciting event here:

Skender Ranks Among Nation’s Top 130 Contractors

Skender ranked at No. 80 out of 130 U.S.-based contractors in Building Design+Construction magazine’s recently published 2018 Giants 300 Report, which ranks U.S. building contractors by annual revenue.

2018 Summer Eclipse

Last month at the Museum of Contemporary Art, the Skender Foundation hosted its 7th annual Summer Eclipse event. $380,000 was raised in one night by sponsors and more than 500 attendees. Check out some highlights from the event!

Vote Here!

Teamed up with Gensler, our CANstruction team built a Keith Haring art piece. Keith Haring was no stranger to how art brings to light social issues, and he understood the impact and importance of speaking up and creating a more just and fulfilled world. Here in Chicago, where a new exhibit of Haring’s murals are on display, the clarity of his blocky, recognizable figures and directness of message is a great way to convey that one in seven people in Cook County will experience food insecurity this year. Show your support by voting for our structure!

Elgin Tower Building wins preservation award

Congrats to all our project partners! Our Elgin Tower project just earned “one of the most prestigious preservation awards in the state:” the 2018 Landmark Illinois Richard H. Driehaus Foundation preservation award for adaptive reuse.

Hyatt House from the Ground-up

Going vertical only happens with expertly planned and executed substructure and foundation. Sterling Bay’s new West Loop Hyatt House hotel was no exception. With innovative thinking from our own project team alongside our great partnerships, we’re bringing the new Hyatt House to life.

Landmarks Illinois announces 2018 Preservation Award Recipients

The Elgin Tower Building recently earned a 2018 Landmarks Illinois Richard H. Driehaus Foundation Preservation Award for adaptive reuse. In February, Skender completed a 60,000-square-foot rehabilitation of the 15-story historic centerpiece in downtown Elgin, Illinois. #adaptivereuse

Infill Redevelopment, a Long Game Perfect for Architects

“Creating a high-performance home chassis that can be configurable, permit-able, and quickly manufactured allows us to work directly with the families that will call these buildings home to define and design them in a fraction of the time of traditional construction.” 
#design #infill #redevelopment 

The Hidden Costs of Open Ceilings

Skender has renovated millions of square feet of award-winning interior workspace environments. Our recent article for Work Design Magazine explores the hidden costs of open ceilings.


Meetings, marketing and mail, oh my! Our corporate interns learned a lot this summer. Check out the fun video they made to see what they did!

Chicago’s top workplace rooftops

The Skender-built interior environment for GGP “was focused on creating many kinds of work seating, but in June that ethos spilled onto a spacious third-floor terrace.”

Essential Process of Pull-Planning

Every project we take on, we build twice—once in the field and once in the office through pull-planning. As part of our Lean project delivery, which saves our clients time and money, we build by collaborating and gathering important input from everyone involved in the project life cycle.

BIM: What you need to know

“How AEC professionals can use BIM to boost productivity, reduce errors, manage workflows, cut costs and resolve disputes.”

Healthcare’s In A State Of Constant Disruption

“The greatest demand is for outpatient facilities. Only 10 years ago, it would have been hard to imagine hip replacement done in an outpatient setting, but now it is increasingly common, especially in newer ambulatory surgery centers …”

Projects Conference Chicago – BuiltWorlds

Don’t miss out – Skender Chief Design Officer Tim Swanson and Chief Technology Officer Kevin Bredeson present alongside ManufactOn’s Raghi Iyengar about their newest collaboration – a vertically-integrated design-manufacturing-build business model.

Amenities That Attract Office Tenants

“Today’s office amenities are all about retaining workers and keeping them in the office longer—and for office property owners, that requires application to the entire building.”

Interiors Market Video

The personality of an organization comes through the built environment. Constructing and renovating millions of square feet of award-winning interior workspace environments has taught us to see every project differently—from tech startups to established law firms.

Reducing design coordination errors with VR, AR

“Within a couple of years, virtual and augmented reality tools won’t seem so exotic, and are going to be routinely applied for clash management as well as many other related applications.”

Rovers set to invade construction jobsites

“Part Wall-E, part MSE-6 mouse droid from “Star Wars,” Doxel’s self-directing robots survey building sites each day to capture HD imagery and laser scans at all stages of construction.”

Gentrification: The Good, the Bad, and the Hipsters

What are the long-term effects of gentrification on communities, and is urban revitalization possible without it? 

Our own Timothy Swanson will explore gentrification and all its implications with The Chicago Council on Global Affairs. Don’t miss out – get your ticket now! 

CRE Future Leaders: Tim Swanson

“…the fact that we start and end our days with a startup mentality, focused on driving and disrupting the industry for collective good, fuels me,” Skender’s Timothy Swanson featured in a Q&A session for RE Journals’ CRE Future Leaders series.

WCA Luncheon: Affordable Housing Panel

Don’t miss your chance to hear Skender’s Timothy Swanson speak at tomorrow’s Affordable Housing Panel luncheon with the West Central Association Chamber of Commerce – get your ticket now!

Learn about affordable off-site options, Near North/West ARO Pilot, and innovative ways to build cost effective housing from Tim and experts from ARO Alternatives, LG Construction + Development, Brinshore Development, LLC and Acosta Ezgur. 

Latinisimo 2018 – Esperanza Health Centers Gala 2018

Join us this Thursday at Latinisimo ’18 in support of Esperanza Health Centers! The event will explore the culinary traditions of Latin America with 9 restaurants representing the best of Chicago’s Latin American cuisine, all in support of one of the top-rated community health centers in the nation.

Skender Foundation : Summer Eclipse 2018

Summer Eclipse early bird tickets are on sale now! Purchase yours today and join us July 19 at Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago to support The Bridge Teen Center, a nonprofit community center that provides free after school programs, weekend entertainment and special events for students in 7th-12th grade. 

Limelight 2018 featuring A Road to Greenbuild Event

Mark your calendar for Limelight, a celebration of achievements in sustainability with Illinois Green Alliance (formerly USGBC-Illinois). We are proud sponsors of this event, and of all the work by Illinois Green Alliance to make our communities more sustainable. 

DisruptCRE – Chicago

Skender CTO Kevin Bredeson will be speaking about #BuildingTech at DisruptCRE Chicago on May 3. Hope to see you there! 

The Hidden Costs of Open Ceilings

While open ceilings have many benefits, costing less isn’t one of them. Skender’s Clay Edwards explains in this Work Design Magazine article: 


We are proud to sponsor Sterling Bay’s 4th Annual 5k to 1k Fulton Market race! All proceeds benefit Cara Chicago, a leader of poverty alleviation throughout Chicagoland. #skendermoves 

Tech Report 5.0: Why wait for 3D renderings?

“Real-time rendering still presents some trade offs when compared to traditional rendering. But as the technology advances, the benefits will begin to outweigh the limitations.”

6 trends shaping smart hotels

“From real-time guest feedback to AI-driven hyper-personalization, the hotel of the future will emphasize service, convenience, authenticity, and just the right amount of technology.”

Big Kids Rock Chicago

Join us February 27 at City Winery for Big Kids Rock, a concert hosted by Little Kids Rock featuring Skender’s rock band Not to Exceed among others in support of music education in Chicago Public Schools. Tickets available here:

Skender Starts 225 000-SF Restack Project for HERE Technologies

Skender recently began interior construction of the 225,000-square-foot office space for HERE Technologies at 425 W. Randolph. We are excited to be partnering with Gensler, JLL and ESD (Environmental Systems Design, Inc.) on this big restack project!

Senior living design trends for 2018

“Designing boutique and upscale communities for seniors and their baby boomer family members has been at the forefront of design considerations.”

Aging Population Driving Medical Office Demand in U.S.

“The population aged 65 and above is expected to increase by 1.7 million (3.3 percent) in 2018 and by 9.2 million (18 percent) over the next five years, driving short- and long-term demand for medical services.”

Fourth Annual Summer Eclipse Raises More Than $325,000 For Local Charities

Skender Foundation hosted its annual fundraiser, Summer Eclipse, on July 16 at The Underground Chicago. This year’s charity partner and primary benefactor was OneGoal, the nation’s only teacher-led college enrollment and persistence organization. $25,000 of the money raised by sponsors and attendees will be donated to OneGoal, while the rest will be dispersed to various other charities dedicated to education and wellness throughout the course of the year. In the past, Summer Eclipse donations have gone to more than 70 different charity organizations.

Founded in 2003, OneGoal identifies, trains and supports our nation’s most effective teachers to lead underserved high school students to reach their full potential and graduate from college. Funds raised at Summer Eclipse will enable OneGoal to serve nearly 4,000 students in Chicago during the 2015-2016 school year.

“We are so grateful to be this year’s recipient and can’t thank Skender Foundation enough for its generosity and all that it means for our Fellows!” says OneGoal Director of Corporate & Individual Giving, Caitlin Jones. “This donation will allow us to continue expanding our program to more deserving Chicago students and will help empower them to reach the finish line of college.”

“We have been buzzing about this event for days! We met so many incredible people that will make a significant impact on the students that we serve” says OneGoal Chicago Executive Director, Sarah Berghorst. “Thank you to Skender Foundation for the opportunity, and moreover for being the type of partners that truly get involved with our work.”

“We are thrilled with the success of this year’s Summer Eclipse,” says Skender Foundation’s President, Cheryl Skender. “It has truly been a great partnership with OneGoal, and we are so impressed with the organization’s entrepreneurial mission and programmatic success. Many thanks go to our sponsors for their generous donations and to attendees for participating in such a wonderful evening.”

Skender Foundation’s next event, Harvesting Hope, will take place on October 15 at House of Blues Chicago. Hosted by the Builders’ Board, a committee of Skender Foundation, Harvesting Hope will benefit Foundations of Music, a nonprofit organization that provides programs designed to implement culturally relevant, hands-on music education for children in Chicago. For event announcements and photos, follow Skender Foundation on Facebook and Twitter.