PB celebrating 125 years

Posted on March 10, 2010

Parsons Brinckerhoff (PB) is celebrating its 125th anniversary.

In 1885, William Barclay Parsons established a consulting engineering practice in Lower Manhattan and, today, the firm is a strategic consulting, planning, engineering and program/construction management organization with approximately 14,000 employees in 150 offices on six continents. In January, the firm, which maintains its headquarters in New York City, welcomed a new CEO, George J. Pierson, and began its first full year of operation as a wholly-owned subsidiary of Balfour Beatty plc, London.

During its 125-year history, PB has participated in the development of the first mass transit systems for New York City, San Francisco, Atlanta, Taipei and Singapore; the advancement of immersed-tube tunnel technology; and various innovations in the design and construction of bridges.

Recent and current PB projects include the Kanchanaphisek Bridge in Bangkok, Thailand, opened in November, 2007; the new Woodrow Wilson Bridge outside Washington, D.C., dedicated in May, 2008; the Epping-to-Chatswood Rail Link in Sydney, Australia, opened in February, 2009; the Central Link light rail in Seattle, Washington, opened in July, 2009; the ongoing Medupi Power Station in South Africa; the ongoing Chicago O'Hare International Airport Modernization Program; and the ongoing Building Schools for the Future program in Newcastle, UK.

In October 2009, PB became a wholly-owned subsidiary of Balfour Beatty, an international engineering, construction, professional services and investment firm based in London. The acquisition of PB by Balfour Beatty also led to the integration of Heery International, an Atlanta-based company owned by Balfour Beatty, into PB, adding another nearly 1,000 employees and bringing to PB a respected building design and construction management team.

While continuing to look globally for growth, PB maintains its high profile in New York.  In addition to its work on the New York subway system, PB continues to contribute to the future development of the region's transportation infrastructure. PB is leading a joint venture that is designing the East Side Access project, which will bring Long Island Rail Road service (which currently terminates at Penn Station on the west side of Manhattan) to Grand Central Terminal on the East Side. 

Additionally, PB is part of a joint venture team that is designing the Trans-Hudson Express Tunnel Project, a new underwater crossing of the Hudson River from New Jersey to an expanded Penn Station in New York City.

"We designed the first subway here and more than 100 years later we are still playing a major role in planning, designing, building and maintaining the critical transportation infrastructure this city needs to prosper for the next 100 years," Pierson said. 


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