McCarthy Building, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis Reach Settlement

courthouseThe Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis and McCarthy Building Companies Inc. have agreed to settle a lawsuit over allegedly defective windows that were installed five years ago, according to a statement from McCarthy Building.

Terms of the settlement were not disclosed.

“Quality is of the utmost importance on every McCarthy project, and we are pleased to have reached a mutually agreeable settlement on all issues,” says McCarthy Central Division president Scott Wittkop. “We look forward to a strong and productive relationship with all parties going forward.”

Subcontractors also named as defendants in the lawsuit included University City-based window manufacturer Winco Window Co., St. Louis-based Hilboldt Curtainwall, a designer of custom exterior wall enclosures, and Architectural Glass Products LLC, a Winco subsidiary based in Miramar, Fla., according to papers filed with the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri.

The Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis claimed in filing the suit in July that McCarthy Building, Winco and Hilboldt Curtainwall were responsible for installing at least 498 defective windows spread throughout the first six floors of the bank’s headquarters in downtown St. Louis in 2008. The Fed was seeking more than $1.5 million to replace the windows, move employees and readjust security measures, according to the filing.

The Fed and McCarthy, which had been hired to provide construction management for renovations and an addition at the St. Louis Fed’s headquarters, tried to settle the dispute privately, but nearly two years of negotiations failed to produce a deal to which both sides could agree.

The windows in question were Winco model Nos. 3350 and 1550 that were supposed to be fixed, aluminum-framed laminated and insulating glass designed to prevent buckling, the opening of joints, the overstressing of components and the failure of joint sealants among other things. The glass was also expected to be resistant to blasts and other detrimental effects, which was desired by the Bank for security reasons, according court records.

The windows were installed in four phases from January 2008 to September 2008. However, a Hilboldt inspection of the windows in June 2011 revealed that the windows had allegedly begun delaminating along the edges and “appeared to be defective,” according to initial court documents.

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