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Behind the List with Louise Schomp Smith of Bean Inc.Completing large projects on a local level

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Louise Schomp Smith, president of Bean Inc. in Wilson, says the excavating company uses local vendors and sources to help stimulate the area economy.
Louise Schomp Smith, president of Bean Inc. in Wilson, says the excavating company uses local vendors and sources to help stimulate the area economy. - (Photo / )

The number of construction projects recently completed or underway in the Greater Lehigh Valley is making a strong economic impact in the region.

From the revitalization efforts of a once dormant downtown Allentown to rebuilding efforts in Reading to the rising number of distribution and warehouse centers seemingly everywhere, a lot is happening in the region’s cities and townships.

Fortunately, there are many contractors and excavating companies in the area to help make possible these projects.

Here to answer this week’s “Behind the List” questions is Louise Schomp Smith of Bean Inc. in Wilson.

Lehigh Valley Business: How long has Bean Inc. been operating in the region and what are its primary services?

Louise Schomp Smith: Bean Inc. has been in business since 1921, and we have been doing business in the Lehigh Valley extending approximately 60 miles out of the Easton area.

Our primary services are site work, excavating, site utilities, selective demolition and heavy hauling.

LVB: What have been some of the biggest challenges and opportunities that Bean Inc. has encountered throughout its years in business?

Schomp Smith: The biggest challenge we have had is the nonunion competition explosion of contractors which saturated the market. We have had many great opportunities that being union brought us, most recently the PPL Arena [Allentown] and the Sands Casino [Bethlehem].

LVB: What are some of the most notable projects that Bean Inc. has completed on a local level? What are some projects that it has in the pipeline in the Greater Lehigh Valley?

Schomp Smith: Some notable projects would include Mack Trucks in Macungie, Dorney Water Park, Easton Hospital, Lehigh Valley Hospital, Air Products, Lehigh Valley [Hospital] Muhlenberg, St. Luke’s Hospital, Allentown School District, Northampton County Courthouse, Lehigh University, Sands Casino, ArtsQuest, PBS, PPL Arena and Lehighton School District.

Current projects and some on the way are FedEx [Allen Township], Vault 634 and Sands Casino.

Upcoming is hard to say, as work is bid [on] and awarded quite quickly.

LVB: How does Bean Inc. directly stimulate the local economy? How does it get involved with the local community?

Schomp Smith: We hire local employees, always try to source materials locally and work with local vendors who do the same.

We are active with the local community by donating equipment for various organizations, such as the Easton Holiday Committee for the Peace Candle and most recently with the Allentown Rotary for its new fountain.

LVB: What does the future look like for Bean Inc.? Does it have plans for growth?

Schomp Smith: The future looks bright. We are taking steps to broaden our horizons and make the bold move in expanding our fields of work.

We have branched out from our roots to include final clean portion of work for projects, as well as most recently started doing more general contracting work.

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Christopher Holland

Christopher Holland

Christopher Holland is a researcher for Lehigh Valley Business and blogs on arts and entertainment in the region.

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