U.S. Engineering Company was established in Kansas City in 1893. Though to be fair, our roots run all the way back to 1855 – to a small shop in Cologne, Germany – owned and operated by Gustav Nottberg.
Building on that storied history, we are now one of the most experienced, diversified and respected mechanical contractors in the United States. With three locations, we’ve continued to build on our reputation of providing quality mechanical contracting solutions that best fit owners’ needs.
Our secret? We’ve continued to maximize owners’ investments in their facilities while staying true to the principals on which we were founded. Few firms are able to combine such a distinguished history with the sort of progressive, high-quality performance that defines our company – both as a top mechanical contractor and as a driving force within the communities in which we operate.
- Ranked in the Top 15 of mechanical construction firms nationwide
- Presence in diverse market sectors
- Service offerings that focus on the total lifecycle of your building
- Passionate leadership and strong company culture
As we continue to evolve, we’re dedicated to helping you do the same.
After completing his Apprenticeship, Journeyman Gustav Nottberg I opens a one-man operation called Nottberg Machine Works in Cologne, Germany.
Gustav and Margaret Nottberg move to Kansas City, MO with their three sons (William, John and Henry) for greater opportunity. They settle in the Strawberry Hill area near other German acquaintances.
Nottberg Iron and Machine Works is established in Kansas City, MO by Gustav Nottberg. The company focuses on repairing axles and bearings for train companies and other heavy industry companies.
John and Henry Nottberg rename the company to U.S. Engineering Co., Nottberg Bros.
U.S. Engineering begins specializing in the design and installation of ammonia refrigeration systems. The company installs the first successful small refrigeration system in Kansas City at the Neuer Brothers Sausage Factory.
Anti-German sentiment during WWI convinces the family to drop Nottberg from its name and officially become U.S. Engineering Company.
The “miracle compound” Freon is invented and in 1932 Carrier Corporation produces the first self-contained home air conditioning unit called an “Atmospheric Cabinet.”
U.S. Engineering sees Freon as an opportunity to diversify its product offerings and determines to make it an expertise of the company.
During WWII, U.S. Engineering wins one of its largest jobs to date; the Kansas Ordnance Plant, in Parsons, KS, involving installation of process piping and equipment for welding plating on artillery shells. In 1941 the company begins work on all the plumbing and piping for the $13 million Olathe Naval Station.
U.S. Engineering receives significant press coverage for its contributions to the war effort. This article in the Kansas City Journal details how the company employed more than 400 men to install all of the heating, ventilation, air conditioning, water treatment and steam piping in the Lake City Ordnance Plant.
U.S. Engineering is forced to sell their building at 914 Campbell St. to make way for Interstate 35. The company purchases an existing building at 3433 Roanoke Road from Southwestern Bell, which serves as its headquarters location today.
A big year for U.S. Engineering: Henry Nottberg, Jr. takes over as President and Kenny Klinger starts a formal Service Department at U.S. Engineering.
Gus Nottberg, Jr. (who was working in Colorado Springs) convinces U.S. Engineering to open a branch in Colorado. The company quickly wins bids for the U.S. Air Force Academy and Nazarene Bible College.
U.S. Engineering starts bidding work in northern Colorado and wins the Colorado State University stadium project. The company opens its first small office near in Colorado Springs.
U.S. Engineering diversifies their service offerings: paint system expertise for automobile plants like General Motors and Ford; process piping for large industrial facilities such as Phillips Petroleum and complex hospital systems; clean-room expertise for companies such as Hewlett Packard and Agilent.
U.S. Engineering opens a permanent office in Loveland, CO and begins piping and plumbing fabrication. Sheet metal fabrication is added in 1975. Prefabrication expands rapidly after U.S. Engineering wins a contract with Ft. Carson to fabricate, install and erect plumbing trees for a group of 24-room barracks buildings.
U.S. Engineering begins to develop a formalized safety program in all regions including a company-wide program, still in operation today, called “Partners in Safety.”
U.S. Engineering helps build the largest hotel in the world (at the time) – the 5,009 room MGM Grand Hotel in Las Vegas. The company installed more than 37 miles of copper tubing, 28 air handling units at 54,000 CFM each, and 12,000 tons of cooling.
Gus Nottberg, Jr. and Henry “Skip” Nottberg buy the company from Skip’s father, Henry Nottberg, Jr. Gus and Skip become fourth-generation owners of U.S. Engineering.
U.S. Engineering wins the contract to build a new Honda plant in Warren, OH. The plant includes a series of robots that perform welding and painting tasks in the auto production lines. This is the first Honda plant built in the United States.
U.S. Engineering publishes a formalized set of Core Values:
- Exhibit integrity in everything we do
- Listen, identify and respond to customer needs
- Provide quality, on schedule, at a competitive price
- Respect, challenge and recognize each employee
- Ensure a safe working environment
U.S. Engineering celebrates its 100th year in business in the United States. The Kansas City Star features an article on the company’s centennial achievement.
Dwight Brinkman, a 23 year veteran with U.S. Engineering, is named President, Chairman & CEO. He is the first non-Nottberg to hold the position since Gustav went into business in Germany in 1855.
Executive Vice President, Tim Moormeier, is named President of the company.
Dwight Brinkman retires and Tyler Nottberg is elected Chairman & CEO, becoming the fifth generation of Nottberg leadership.
U.S. Engineering is awarded its largest job to date, the Department of Energy’s National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) facility, worth approximately $120 million in contract value.
The company wins two large healthcare projects: Exempla St. Joseph Heritage Hospital in Denver, CO; and Mercy Health Joplin Replacement Hospital in Joplin, MO.
U.S. Engineering diversifies its service offerings and opens U.S. Engineering Company Innovations, LLC. Innovations specializes in multi-trade prefabrication and modular construction for the industrial and manufacturing markets.
The Midwest division expands their construction services by adding a sheet metal fabrication facility.
The Rocky Mountain region is named Specialty Contractor of the Year by ENR Mountain States.
The company wins awards on four projects: Ewing Marion Kauffman School – DBIA-MAR Design-Build Merit Award, Mechanical over $5 Million, National Nuclear Security Administration – Capstone Award, Industrial Category, Richard Bolling Federal Building – Capstone Award, Commercial Category, and Cerner Continuous Campus (Cerner West) – Capstone Award, Office Category.
Mercy Health Joplin Replacement Hospital in Joplin, MO is completed and wins the ENR Midwest Best Project in Health Care.
The company wins awards on two recent projects: Rockhurst University Pedro Arrupe, S.J., Hall – Capstone Award, Architectural Design Category, and Richard Bolling Federal Building Modernization, Phase IV – Capstone Award, Office Category