KPFF Consulting Engineers

Vice president: Ralph Y. Iboshi

Specialty: Civil, structural, bridge and waterfront engineering

Year founded: 1960

2002 revenues: $17 million

2003 revenues: $19 million

Largest project in 2003: Amgen Helix Research and Technology Center

At home and overseas, KPFF is involved in significant projects. Their largest project in Seattle is the Amgen Helix Research and Technology Center. One of the largest capital projects in Seattle in the last 20 years, the Helix development will have 750,000 square feet of labs and offices.

Paul Diedrich, KPFF principal, said the health care and biotech markets are strong, though the pace of new work in these areas has slowed. “The perception is that the market is picking up, but it seems to be in a cautious mode,” he said, referring especially to biotech.

On the civil engineering side, principal Dave Seman said KPFF is working on the Greenbridge housing project, formerly called Park Lake Homes, doing civil engineering for master planning and entitlement for the 95-acre redevelopment in White Center, which is partially funded by HUD. Greenbridge is a pilot project on King County’s efforts to implement low-impact development and Built Green standards as part of the building code. This project will use Green Streets Concepts which KPFF helped pilot on a mixed-use building in Belltown at Western and Cedar.

KPFF is also working on state Route 539, a 10-mile widening project in Bellingham. The project has been fast-tracked to be prepared for the Vancouver 2010 Olympics.

KPFF’s projects outside the country include two in Taiwan: The Hall of Still Thought, a Buddhist temple; and the Tan Tzu Medical Center, which will be the largest base-isolated building in the world. A growing overseas sector for KPFF is retail, Diedrich said. Big box retailers are expanding in Mexico, Taiwan, China and Korea. Diedrich said most of the work for the retailers has been structural engineering, and some early civil work.

Another growth market for KPFF is security work, in both domestic and international markets. KPFF has done work for the Seattle Nakamura Courthouse, and Portland’s Pioneer Courthouse and Edith Green/Wendall Wyatt Federal Courthouse — doing physical security services, such as blast design and building hardening. He expects the firm’s security work to quadruple next year.

Diedrich said KPFF has “weathered the recession well,” without reduction of staff. “As work starts to pick up, we’ll be in the growth mode some time soon,” he said.

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