Construction Lending Requirements – Phase I Environmental Site Assessment (ESA)

Whether you’re putting together a puzzle or trying to get a construction loan, you need to have the correct pieces in place to ensure success. Let’s take a look at an essential piece of the puzzle that Schemmer can assist with during the Construction Lending Process.

Phase I Environmental Site Assessment (ESA) Schemmer Engineering Omaha Lincoln Des Moines IAPhase I Environmental Site Assessment (ESA)

Construction Loans often require borrowers to have a Phase I ESA. Schemmer provides professional consulting services to Construction Lenders/borrowers to give them the information they need to ensure they can make informed and strategic decisions prior to purchasing a property.

A Phase I ESA assessment is a five-step process that includes:

  1. Review of Regulatory Agency Records – A search is performed on available state and federal environmental databases within the American Society for Testing and Materials-specified distances
  2. Review of Historical Land Use - Our team will use standard sources of historical information to identify prior uses of the property such as:
  • Aerial photos
  • Fire insurance maps
  • Property tax files
  • S. Geological Survey 7.5-minute topographic map
  • Local directories
  • Zoning/land use records
  1. Site Reconnaissance Visit – Schemmer will visit the property to observe uses and conditions and look for any evidence that may suggest there are environmental conditions associated with it.
  2. Interviews – Our team’s goal is to obtain information indicating recognized environmental conditions by interviewing current and past property owners, as well as adjacent property owners. We also contact local and state agencies with jurisdiction over hazardous waste disposal or substance release, and the fire and health department.
  3. Produce an ESA Phase I Report – In the final step, we will provide an organized and thorough report of our findings.

The assessment typically takes two to three weeks to thoroughly research and investigate the property and deliver the final report.

Phase I Environmental Site Assessment (ESA) and Beyond

“Schemmer can truly be a one-stop resource for all of the property project needs. When the client engages us to perform a Phase I ESA, we get to know the ins and outs of the property very well. Our team can also provide the lender’s client with a full range of in-house architecture, engineering and construction field services to help make their vision a reality. Whether new construction, renovation or addition, we are able to hit the ground running with the wealth of property information uncovered from the assessment,” said Rob DuVall, PE, Civil Engineer.

If you’re in the market for a Phase I ESA, give Rob DuVall, PE, a call. He’s been at this game for nearly a decade. He can provide you with the information you need to make sure your site due diligence is comprehensive.

Schemmer_Rob DuVall_Phase I ESA


Rob DuVall, PE

402.493.4800 |

Be sure to watch for the next piece of our Construction Lending puzzle.


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Schemmer is a full-service architecture, engineering and construction field services consultant, providing responsible solutions for complex design and construction-related challenges. Founded in 1959, we are grounded in our past but remain fully committed to the future. Located in three States and six offices throughout the Midwest. Schemmer is providing services to clients from coast-to-coast and border-to-border across the United States.

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