Putnam Collins Scott Associates

Mangement: Dan Putnam, president; Jim Collins, executive vice president; Don Scott, vice president-director of engineering

Specialty: Structural engineering

Year founded: 1965

2002 revenues: $5.3 million

Projected 2003 revenues: $5.5 million

Largest projects: LeMay Museum in Tacoma, Mt. Rainier High School in south Seattle, Washoe Hospital expansion in Reno

Putnam Collins Scott Associates saw its first significant “internal recession” in the 17 years that the current generation has owned the firm. That came on the heels of 70 percent growth over the past three years, with employment peaking at 50 full-time staff.

Revenues were down by nearly 20 percent and staff was reduced to 46 this past year.

“The saving grace to our challenging year was that our backlog of work turned around to near record levels at the mid point of the year. The work is still in the process of ramping up and we will be back to full speed early next year,” said Dan Putnam, president of the firm. “A significant drop in smaller private work, assisted-living projects and a gap between major hospital projects contributed to most of our slowdown. We’re excited to see several new assisted-living projects and are starting design on about $250 million of hospital work in Nevada, Hawaii and Puyallup.”

One third of the firm’s production is in its Seattle office. In the past year, it moved into the Colman Building to allow space for continued steady growth in both public and private sector projects.

K-12 education has held steady and continues to be half of the firm’s work. Major projects include Garfield, Kingston, Capital, Yelm, Bethel, Bonny Lake and Rainier high schools. Mount Tahoma High School is nearing structural completion and the firm’s “Integrated Steel Design” delivery method has been a success.

Integrated Steel Design includes the firm’s management of early mill steel bidding and preparation of the shop drawings, which resulted in a faster construction schedule and negligible structural steel change orders at Mount Tahoma.

Higher education has slowed a little, but Putnam said they have continued work at UW Tacoma, Pierce College and Evergreen State College. Community college work is expected to rebound next year as state funding is in place for a number of projects.

The Tacoma Art Museum opened this past spring and the firm is now working on the LeMay Car Museum, one of the largest of its kind in the world.

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