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|Industry||Design, Engineering consulting, Environment consulting, Project management|
|Founder||William Barclay Parsons (1885)|
|Headquarters||One Penn Plaza, New York City, United States|
Number of locations
|New York, London, Dubai, Hong Kong, Singapore, Sydney and approximately 150 other offices worldwide|
|Gregory Kelly, President and CEO, U.S.|
|Products||Strategic consulting, planning, design, program management, engineering, construction services and operations & maintenance|
Number of employees
|Approximately 14,000 worldwide|
Parsons Brinckerhoff is a multinational engineering and design firm with approximately 14,000 employees. The firm operates in the fields of strategic consulting, planning, engineering, construction management, infrastructure and community planning. In 2013, the company was named the tenth largest U.S.-based engineering/design firm by Engineering News Record. On October 31, 2014 Parsons Brinckerhoff became a wholly owned independent subsidiary of WSP Global, a Canadian-based professional services firm. Together, WSP/Parsons Brinckerhoff is one of the largest professional services firms in the world with approximately 31,500 employees in 500 offices serving 39 countries.
Founded in 1885 in New York City by William Barclay Parsons, among Parsons Brinckerhoff’s earliest projects was the original IRT line of the New York City Subway, designed by Parsons Brinckerhoff and opened in 1904. Parsons Brinckerhoff also designed the Cape Cod Canal, which opened in 1914  and charted the course of a railway in China from Hankow (Wuhan) to Canton (Guangzhou), a line that is also still in use today. In 1906, Henry M. Brinckerhoff, a highway engineer, brought his expertise in electric railways to the firm. He is known for his co-invention of the third rail.
The firm has worked on some of the most notable infrastructure projects of the 20th century, including: the Detroit–Windsor Tunnel (1930); the Scheldt Tunnel in Antwerp, Belgium (1933); The Buzzards Bay Railroad Bridge on Cape Cod, Massachusetts (1935); The 1939 World's Fair in New York City; the Garden State Parkway in New Jersey (1957); the Hampton Roads Bridge-Tunnel in Virginia (1957); the Pell Bridge in Newport, Rhode Island (1969); the I-95/Fort McHenry Tunnel (1980); the H-3 Highway in Oahu, Hawaii (1997); the Sabiya Power Station in Kuwait (2000) and the rapid transit systems of San Francisco (1972); Atlanta (1979); Singapore (1987); Taipei (1996); and Caracas (1983).
Parsons Brinckerhoff was acquired by Balfour Beatty in October 2009 and operated as a wholly owned subsidiary of the Balfour Beatty plc. In October 2010 Balfour Beatty acquired Halsall Associates, which became a subsidiary of Parsons Brinckerhoff and part of its Canadian operations. On October 31, 2014 Balfour Beatty sold Parsons Brinckerhoff to WSP Global.
Currently, the firm is involved in several major expansions of the public transportation system in the New York metropolitan area, including the new 7 Subway Extension, Second Avenue Subway, and Long Island Rail Road's East Side Access to Grand Central Terminal, Other current and recent projects include: the Taiwan High Speed Rail Project; the Bosphorus rail tunnel in Istanbul; The Woodrow Wilson Bridge in Washington, D.C.; an extension of the East London Line of the London Overground; and the Medupi Power Station in South Africa.
Parsons Brinckerhoff partnered with rival engineering firm Bechtel to build the troubled Big Dig in Boston, Massachusetts. The Big Dig, or Central Artery / Tunnel project, as it was officially known was intended to replace an elevated Interstate freeway and connecting roads with a tunnel system underneath Boston. The project was beset with bad engineering, shoddy workmanship, and the death of an automobile passenger as a poor ceiling design caused a tunnel roof section to collapse on a car in the tunnel, crushing the victim. The Big Dig was years over schedule and engineering costs to several times of Bechtel/Parsons Brinckerhoff's original estimates, from $8 Billion to in excess of $24 Billion. Due to the poor construction, it has been estimated that the Big Dig's life span will be far short of the original specification that taxpayers paid for. The tunnels still have "thousands of leaks" and substandard materials. Subsequent to the fatal tunnel ceiling collapse, light fixtures have been found to have been incorrectly installed and corroding, posing a risk of failure and falling to the tunnel roadway.
Parsons Brinckerhoff was also the lead engineering firm to build the Silver Spring, Maryland transportation center. Despite a ballooning budget and a project that has run far behind schedule, the transit center was poorly constructed and has not become operational due to poor design and workmanship. In April, 2014, the Washington Post published an expose on Parsons Brinckerhoff's troubled transit center, reporting that an independent report has found that the public would be at risk due to falling concrete and needs a significant redesign and upgrades. Parsons Brinckerhoff were in a lawsuit for Lane Cove Tunnel, Sydney, Australia (Supreme Court New South Wales Court Ref No 2009/290489). The claim by AMP Capital Investors for $(AU)144M was settled in September 2014. The basis of the claim was 'Misleading and defective conduct' but the settlement is on confidential terms with no admission of liability.
On 3 September 2014, it was announced that WSP Global had made an offer to purchase Parsons Brinckerhoff from Balfour Beatty plc for USD$1.24 billion. The transaction closed on October 31, 2014 and Parsons Brinckerhoff is now a wholly owned subsidiary of WSP Global.
- "The Top 500 Design Firms,"Parsons Brinckerhoff, 2013
- "Press release WSP Global".
- "News WSP Global".
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- William James Reid, The Building of the Cape Cod Canal (New York: George McKibbin and Son, Inc., 1961).
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- Report: Even More Big Dig Leaks Found - Big Dig News Story - WCVB Boston Archived May 23, 2006, at the Wayback Machine.
- , "Transit center report: Public at risk from falling concrete without additional repairs"
- Tess Stynes (3 September 2014). "Balfour Beatty to Sell Parsons Brinckerhoff to WSP Global". WSJ.