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Verona company making an Epic leap in building

Epic: Extending beyond the usual or ordinary especially in size or scope.

I’m sure it was no accident that Epic Systems Corp. chose an ambitious name. The company’s main campus address in Verona also reflects its origins (1979) and the direction they’re moving: 1979 Milky Way. A line from the movie “Toy Story” comes to mind – “to infinity and beyond.”

The private, employee-owned company makes cutting-edge software for mid-size and large medical groups, hospitals and integrated healthcare organizations. The history of the company’s origins and lightning-fast growth is a fascinating story, plus the fact that a woman started and still runs the company.

Squeezed for space in Madison, in 2003 Epic began construction of a new company campus in the city of Verona and has never looked back. Eight years later the company is still growing and contractors are still working on new campus buildings. A search of The Daily Reporter’s JobTrac database reveals about 44 bid packages since 2003, the most recent in December for “Epic Campus 2B.”

J.P. Cullen and Sons Inc., Janesville, has been the general contractor since the beginning, and Cuningham Group Architecture, Minneapolis, has been the architect.

Epic is making an impression environmentally as well. Two examples are underground parking ramps and geo-thermal heating. The two underground parking ramps replace standard surface parking. These ramps are topped with a thick layer of soil and planted with grass. With the rain soaking slowly into the underground water tables, runoff is greatly reduced.

This month, Epic presented preliminary plans to the Verona Plan Commission requesting permission to build a second auditorium – this one 10,000 to 13,000 seats. The current auditorium has 5,400 seats and is receiving an update to add 600 more – they are that busy. Similar to the underground parking ramps, this auditorium is designed to be mostly underground, built in to the side of a hill with gardens and grass. They seem to do underground construction quite well.

There’s always the danger of sprawl occurring when such a large construction project is built in a rural area in close proximity to a large city – in this case, Madison. That remains to be seen for this area.

I’ve driven past Epic on the Highway 151 side and was surprised at how unobtrusive it was. It still feels rural.

Ann Knoedler is the lead data reporter at The Daily Reporter. How she found those 44 bid packages in The Daily Reporter’s JobTrac database only she knows.


  1. Cullen has not been the contractor since the beginning. Findorff did phase 1 of the project and actually built the underground parking structure that is described.

  2. Thanks for the correction Cory – sorry for the omission.

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