Valdosta Lowndes County Development Authority directors have approved an agreement under which Bates Precast Concrete, Inc. will invest up to $5 million in a new Lake Park Industrial Park office and production facility, increasing drainage and utility structure offerings from a present 6.4-acre Lake Park, Ga. site.

“This expansion will make it possible for Bates Precast to provide more jobs and better benefits for existing employees, as well as continuing to provide quality products for airports, roads, schools, and backyards,” says President Sharie Bates Elliott. Work is scheduled to begin by year end on the new operation, she adds, resulting in the addition of production crews plus new engineer, estimator, draftsperson and sales positions.

Keystone Hardscapes is embracing the outdoor space needs of Mid-Atlantic homeowners, contractors, developers, architects, designers and landscape material distributors by bringing New Jersey-based CST under its umbrella. Recognized for high-quality pavers, segmental retaining wall units and related products, CST gains award-winning design innovation, a deeper offering and robust marketing expertise as part of Keystone Hardscapes.

“This transition will help landscape professionals secure more projects that produce greater profit while generating repeat business,” says Vice President of Sales Ed Fioroni. “We’re also part of The Quikrete Companies and its vast national distribution network, complementary product portfolio and technology resources, which really reinforces the value of rolling CST into Keystone Hardscapes.”

Founded in 1984 as Concrete Stone & Tile, CST built its reputation on the one-piece, Mono-Cast construction concept guaranteeing hardscape products with consistent integral color and strength for extended life cycles. From permeable pavers used on a driveway or pool deck to fireplaces and SRW units used to create an outdoor paradise, CST has a wide range of hardscapes sizes, colors and finishes for any residential or commercial job. Injecting CST into the Keystone Hardscapes organization will afford regional customers a single-source for all purchasing, technical support and customer care. The consolidated service model delivers customers proven product performance and financial efficiency.

Wisconsin precast/prestressed producer Spancrete has promoted Erik Varnadoe to vice president of Precast Operations. He will be based at the Waukesha headquarters outside Milwaukee with responsibilities for Valders, Wis., Crystal Lake, Ill. and Sebring, Fla. precast operations, plus machinery production, also in Waukesha. Varnadoe joined the producer in 2019, bringing nearly 15 years of experience in precast production, and has held operations and management positions in other manufacturing sectors. During a U.S Navy tour of duty, he served as a fire control technician.