Fru-Con Const. Co. v. Southwestern Redevelopment Corp. II, FRU-CON

CourtCourt of Appeal of Missouri (US)
Writing for the CourtSMITH
Citation908 S.W.2d 741
PartiesCONSTRUCTION COMPANY, Respondent, v. SOUTHWESTERN REDEVELOPMENT CORPORATION II, Appellant.
Decision Date15 August 1995
Docket NumberFRU-CON,No. 67724

Page 741

908 S.W.2d 741
FRU-CON CONSTRUCTION COMPANY, Respondent,
v.
SOUTHWESTERN REDEVELOPMENT CORPORATION II, Appellant.
No. 67724.
Missouri Court of Appeals,
Eastern District, Division Two.
Aug. 15, 1995.
Motion for Rehearing and/or Transfer to
Supreme Court Denied Sept. 25, 1995.
Application to Transfer Denied
Nov. 21, 1995.

Page 742

Timothy E. Hayes, Kent D. Kehr, Coburn & Croft, St. Louis, C. Wayne Primm, Southwestern Bell Tel. Co., St. Louis, for appellant.

Timothy R. Thornton, Greensfelder, Hemker & Gale, P.C., St. Louis, for respondent.

SMITH, Presiding Judge.

Defendant, Southwestern Redevelopment Corporation II, appeals from the denial by the trial court of its motion for stay of proceedings pending arbitration. The court denied the motion on the basis that the "claim" asserted by the plaintiff, Fru-Con Construction Co., against the defendant was not arbitrable under the contract of the parties. Finding that determination to be erroneous as to all but one portion of the cause of action we reverse.

Fru-Con as Contractor and Southwestern as Owner entered into a contract for the construction of the Southwestern Bell Data Center in the City of St. Louis. The total contract exceeded one hundred million dollars. The parties utilized a standard form contract supplied by the American Institute of Architects with amendments in some areas. Several provisions of that contract are pertinent to the issue on appeal.

§ 2.2.7 The Architect will be the interpreter of the requirements of the Contract Documents and the judge of the performance thereunder by both the Owner and Contractor.

§ 2.2.9 Claims, disputes and other matters in question between the Contractor and the Owner relating to the execution or progress of the Work or the interpretation of the Contract Documents shall be referred initially to the Architect for decision which he will render in writing within a reasonable time.

2.2.12 Any claim, dispute or other matter in question between the Contractor and the Owner referred to the Architect ... shall be subject to arbitration under Paragraph

Page 743

7.9 upon the written demand of either party. However, no demand for arbitration of any such claim, dispute or other matter may be made until the earlier of (1) the date on which the Architect has rendered a written decision, or (2) the tenth day after the parties have presented their evidence to the Architect or have been given a reasonable opportunity to do so, if the Architect has not rendered his written decision by that date ...

7.9.1 All claims, disputes and other matters in question between the Contractor and the Owner arising out of, or relating to, the Contract Documents or the breach thereof ... shall be decided by arbitration in accordance with the Construction Industry Arbitration Rules of the American Arbitration Association then obtaining unless the parties mutually agree otherwise ...

7.9.3 Unless otherwise agreed in writing, the Contractor shall carry on the Work and maintain its progress during any arbitration proceedings, and the Owner shall continue to make payments to the Contractor in accordance with the Contract Documents.

By amendment the parties added to the first line of § 7.9 the following:

", if the total amount of damages arising from the claim or dispute, as estimated by the Architect, are less than $200,000. Any claim, dispute or other matter in question for which the amount of damages is estimated by the Architect to be greater than $200,000, is not subject to arbitration unless the parties mutually agree otherwise."

During the construction process, Contractor submitted Contractor Change Proposals (CCPs) to the architect. In October 1991 the contractor submitted CCP 297 to the architect. In that CCP Contractor stated that he relied on Owner's pre-bid representations for cooperation in a team concept and agreed to a "very aggressive" work schedule in reliance on those representations. Contractor alleged those representations were not true and then listed several situations of delay, misleading plans, and lack of cooperation commencing early in the project and continuing throughout the project. A not complete list of the situations covered included excavation problems, dewatering problems, delays because of the condition of a building across the street not owned by Owner, difficulties with the Metrolink tunnel which went under the real estate, structural concrete formwork problems, and additional subcontracting costs. CCP 297 set an amount of $20,000,000 as the additional amount it was owed by the Owner for the construction of the Data Center from the combination of items contained in the CCP.

In August 1992 the Contractor filed suit claiming breach of contract, quantum meruit, and misrepresentation. Contractor made no request of the architect to evaluate CCP 297, which formed the basis for the lawsuit. In 1994, at the request of Owner, the architect submitted his evaluation of CCP 297 and found that it was comprised of multiple events giving rise to a series of different claims, only one of which exceeded $200,000 and therefore outside the arbitration requirement. In December 1994, Owner served on Contractor its demand for arbitration and filed its motion to stay proceedings. Following hearing the court denied the motion by written order on January 20, 1995. In its order the court found that the "total" amount of Contractor's "claim" exceeded $200,000 as the term "claim" is used in the contract and that the meaning of "claim" was not ambiguous. In defining what "claim" meant the court relied upon Committee for Educational Equality v. State, 878 S.W.2d...

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9 practice notes
  • Dunn Indus. Group v. City of Sugar Creek, No. SC 85024.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Missouri
    • 26 Agosto 2003
    ...An appellate court's review of the arbitrability of a dispute is de novo. Fru-Con Constr. Co. v. Southwestern Redevelopment Corp. II, 908 S.W.2d 741, 743-44 In construing arbitration clauses, courts have categorized such clauses as "broad" or "narrow." McCarney v. Nearing, Staats, Prelogar ......
  • Schwarz v. Gierke, No. 20090220.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of North Dakota
    • 30 Agosto 2010
    ...An appellate court's review of the arbitrability of a dispute is de novo. Fru-Con Constr. Co. v. Southwestern Redevelopment Corp. II, 908 S.W.2d 741, 743-44 (Mo.App.1995).” 112 S.W.3d at 427-28. [¶ 14] In this case, the district court held the account agreement arbitration provision did not......
  • Shelter Prods., Inc. v. OMNI Constr. Co., WD 78598
    • United States
    • Court of Appeal of Missouri (US)
    • 19 Enero 2016
    ...Co. v. H.B.D. Contracting, Inc., 37 S.W.3d 843, 846 (Mo. App. E.D. 2001) (quoting Fru–Con Const. Co. v. Sw. Redevelopment Corp. II, 908 S.W.2d 741, 744 (Mo. App. E.D. 1995) ). Accordingly, in determining whether a stay of the litigation pending arbitration is mandatory, "the standard of rev......
  • Shelter Prods., Inc. v. Omni Constr. Co., WD78598
    • United States
    • Missouri Court of Appeals
    • 19 Enero 2016
    ...Co. v. H.B.D. Contracting, Inc., 37 S.W.3d 843, 846 (Mo. App. E.D. 2001) (quoting Fru-Con Const. Co. v. Sw. Redevelopment Corp. II, 908 S.W.2d 741, 744 (Mo. App. E.D. 1995)). Accordingly, in determining whether a stay of the litigation pending arbitration is mandatory, "the standard of revi......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
9 cases
  • Dunn Indus. Group v. City of Sugar Creek, No. SC 85024.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of Missouri
    • 26 Agosto 2003
    ...An appellate court's review of the arbitrability of a dispute is de novo. Fru-Con Constr. Co. v. Southwestern Redevelopment Corp. II, 908 S.W.2d 741, 743-44 In construing arbitration clauses, courts have categorized such clauses as "broad" or "narrow." McCarney v. Nearing, Staats, Prelogar ......
  • Schwarz v. Gierke, No. 20090220.
    • United States
    • United States State Supreme Court of North Dakota
    • 30 Agosto 2010
    ...An appellate court's review of the arbitrability of a dispute is de novo. Fru-Con Constr. Co. v. Southwestern Redevelopment Corp. II, 908 S.W.2d 741, 743-44 (Mo.App.1995).” 112 S.W.3d at 427-28. [¶ 14] In this case, the district court held the account agreement arbitration provision did not......
  • Shelter Prods., Inc. v. OMNI Constr. Co., WD 78598
    • United States
    • Court of Appeal of Missouri (US)
    • 19 Enero 2016
    ...Co. v. H.B.D. Contracting, Inc., 37 S.W.3d 843, 846 (Mo. App. E.D. 2001) (quoting Fru–Con Const. Co. v. Sw. Redevelopment Corp. II, 908 S.W.2d 741, 744 (Mo. App. E.D. 1995) ). Accordingly, in determining whether a stay of the litigation pending arbitration is mandatory, "the standard of rev......
  • Shelter Prods., Inc. v. Omni Constr. Co., WD78598
    • United States
    • Missouri Court of Appeals
    • 19 Enero 2016
    ...Co. v. H.B.D. Contracting, Inc., 37 S.W.3d 843, 846 (Mo. App. E.D. 2001) (quoting Fru-Con Const. Co. v. Sw. Redevelopment Corp. II, 908 S.W.2d 741, 744 (Mo. App. E.D. 1995)). Accordingly, in determining whether a stay of the litigation pending arbitration is mandatory, "the standard of revi......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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