PARKHILL WILL BE CELEBRATING ITS 75TH ANNIVERSARY BY RECOGNIZING 75 MOMENTS WITH OUR CLIENTS, EMPLOYEES, PROJECTS, AND COMMUNITIES THAT HELPED SHAPE OUR FIRM SINCE 1945. FOLLOW ALONG ON OUR SOCIAL MEDIA CHANNELS WITH HASHTAG #75MOMENTS THROUGHOUT 2020.
Established in 2003, the University of Parkhill had the original goal of providing employees the option to fulfill their continuing education credits as a part of their annual licensure requirements. Dan Hart was the original chancellor for the inaugural event.
Today, the University of Parkhill has become an annual event, bringing all employees together to learn about the latest information pertinent to their profession, but also to get to know their colleagues from each of firm’s offices. Participants get the opportunity to learn about issues specific to the design disciplines which make up the firm and showcase the latest work and success of Parkhill’s team of dedicated employees.
The University of Parkhill provides its employees with continuing education credits in a first-class learning environment, focusing on multiple sessions during the event. Bringing all employees together for this annual event gives the firm an incredible opportunity for team building. Firm-wide strategies and strategic-visioning enhance individual class sessions and fun social events. Classes are led by employees who are experts in their fields, vendors, and outside subject matter experts. Over the past 17 years, PSCU has conducted more than 400 unique courses and workshops.
Jay Edwards spoke at the University of Parkhill in 2019 about the impact of PSC and the mission, vision and values statement on Building Community.
“What you do makes a difference. In the last week, we probably have hundreds of thousands of people who went to school, to work, to church, or to the hospital on roads that you have designed. We have people that waited in airports or taken an airplane in airports that you have designed. Babies have had their first checkup and have had life-saving surgeries in hospitals designed by Parkhill. People got up this morning, went to the sink for a glass of water without thinking twice about it. They gave their child a drink, not worrying if it was safe, because it was a project that you designed, you conceived, and that you executed.”
As the keynote speaker in 2019, Dan Hart showed highlights of the projects the firm had done over the previous year.
“We are the stewards for the built environment. We are looking out for the good of the public – their health, safety, and well-being. So it’s not enough just to do what makes me happy. It’s not enough to just do what I think the world needs from me. It’s the place where those two things overlap that informs my calling; that informs why I’m here. What’s true for us as individuals is also true for us as a firm,” Hart emphasized.
“Welcome to the University of Parkhill. Welcome to Building Community.”
One of the first sets of plans for the City of Midland was for the Scharbauer Drive Bridges dated October 1957, beginning a relationship of over 60 years with Parkhill. In the early 1960s, the firm completed several projects at Midland International Airport and drainage studies for the City of Midland. Every market sector and every discipline has completed significant projects in Midland.
In the 1970s, Midland experienced rapid growth, which led to greater needs at the airport. The Midland International Air and Space Port accounts for numerous projects that Parkhill has completed over the years, including the Midland Airport Terminal, which opened in January 1999. Kyle Womack, a civil engineer, now retired from Parkhill, was instrumental in numerous projects for the City of Midland and establishing the Midland office in 1979.
“I was welcomed in Midland with open arms and the support of the City of Midland,” Kyle said. “The real cornerstone of our success for the first 5-10 years was the airport, but that opened doors for us to do other work for the city.”
Additional projects for the city included arterial street reconstruction, a comprehensive sanitary sewer master plan still in use today, upgrades to the Paul Davis Well Field, major sewer line replacements, and a master drainage plan and storm drainage design manual in the 1980s. Midland T-Bar Design and Construction, completed in 2013, is one impactful project in the area to provide water to the city for 40 years.
The continued rapid growth of Midland in the 1980s provided Parkhill the opportunity to work with private developers, including the Scharbauer Brothers Company, Inc., and all significant master planning that affected growth in the city such as the Master Drainage Master Plan. These efforts were led by Engineers Paul McMillan and Rene Franks, who at the time worked for the city.
“I think the support we have had from the City of Midland early on is what made our entire operation in the Permian Basin successful and allows it to continue after 60+ years,” Kyle said. “In many ways, similar to Lubbock, the City of Midland is foundational to the success of Parkhill.”
The engineering work Parkhill provided eventually led to architectural projects for the city. Some of these projects include the Midland Fire Stations 3, 5, 6 and 10, and the Scharbauer Sports Complex completed in 2003.
Parkhill’s success with the City of Midland also opened doors for projects with Midland College, Midland ISD, Texas Department of Transportation, numerous churches, parks, transportation studies, and many more projects in the area. More recently, the T-Bar Well Field project, and ongoing comprehensive planning, private development, and major thoroughfare rebuilding have continued to make Parkhill a #TrustedAdvisor for the city.
“Jay Edwards and I met with some of the new city leaders recently, and we mapped out for them how the organization of Parkhill’s business sectors is aligned perfectly to serve them,” said Eric West, PE, Sector Director of Site Development Planning. “I think our reorganization ten years ago was in response to providing better service to clients exactly like the City of Midland, plus many others.”
Abilene Christian University (ACU) opened in 1906 with just 25 students. Today, the university serves over 5,000 students, making it one of the largest private universities in the Southwest. Tittle Luther Partnership, LLP, (TLP) has served ACU and the Abilene community since 1957, completing many renovations and new construction projects.
One such project was the Abilene Christian University Williams Center for Performing Arts, which was completed in 2002. The facility provides 92,000 square feet of classroom, performance, and practice facilities for ACU’s music and theater programs. The Lewis and Jerry Fulks Theatre is a 325-seat theater named for a former ACU professor who directed ACU Homecoming Musicals for 30 years as well as ACU’s 50th and 75th Anniversary pageants. The Clara and James Culp Theatre is a smaller multipurpose black box named in honor of an ACU English professor of 15 years. The Williams Center honors the traditions and history of ACU while providing creative spaces for the next generation.
Just before TLP merged with Parkhill in 2012, the firm completed the Abilene Christian University Money Student Recreation and Wellness Center in 2011. The 118,400-square-foot facility features new administrative and academic spaces, indoor sports and recreational spaces, an impressive aquatic facility with a leisure pool, a lap pool, and a sun deck. Healthy living and personal development were core focuses during design, and the resulting facility provides an extensive variety of recreational sports and wellness programs to ACU’s students, faculty, staff, and alumni.
When TLP merged with PSC in 2012, the firm’s relationship with ACU grew as the firm gained more resources to serve the university. In 2018, Parkhill completed the Abilene Christian University Teague Special Events Center, a 4,200-square-foot renovation and addition to consolidating the separate entrances to the special events center and the athletic offices into a single point of entry. The continuously updated gallery also allows ACU to tell its stories, not only those of athletic triumphs but of pioneers of the university and the great things accomplished over the decades.
Fifteen years before, TLP completed the original Teague Special Events Center, and being invited back to assist with the facility’s upgrade speaks to Parkhill’s trusted advisor relationship with ACU. PSC also has experts like Brandon Young, AIA, LEED AP BD+C, who, along with being an Associate and Studio Leader for Parkhill’s Higher Education Sector, is a tenured associate professor of architecture and design at ACU.
“The architects at Parkhill are always available if we ask a question or if we want to ask about industry standards or cost estimating. We have a good relationship,” says the Executive Director of Facilities & Campus Management for ACU Corey Ruff.
TLP and now Parkhill have completed many, many projects at ACU over the years, including student housing developments, the Abilene Christian University Education Building, engineering and physics laboratories, Abilene Christian University Moody Coliseum Renovation, Abilene Christian University Tennis Center, and more. The history between Parkhill and ACU has culminated in the firm’s most recent active project with the university, the Nuclear Science and Engineering Research Center.
In 2019, ACU embarked on an ambitious plan to expand their STEM research by building a new 21-C molten salt loop-moderated nuclear reactor. Thanks to the firm’s long history and strong relationship with ACU, ACU selected Parkhill to take part in this next chapter. Parkhill has also worked on addition and renovations to Abilene Christian University Musical Theater Cullen Auditorium to allow ACU to bring homecoming musicals from the Abilene Convention Center back to the campus for students, alumni, and friends. The original Cullen Auditorium is another TLP project that was completed in 1979. As trusted partners, Parkhill will continue to push the boundaries and innovate higher education spaces alongside ACU.
TxDOT is a valuable client and team member on numerous transportation and aviation projects. These projects include roads, bridges, highways, runways, wayfinding, and airport master plans but also landscaping and aesthetic enhancement.
One of Parkhill’s early projects with TxDOT was in January 1982 with HDR to provide design services to the Lubbock District of TxDOT for I-27 through the City of Lubbock. The project covered 7 miles of a six-lane divided highway with two-lane frontage roads on both sides.
Lubbock Milwaukee Avenue (34th to 92nd Street), Texas Tech Parkway (TTU Parkway), and the widening of Lubbock Frankford Avenue (82nd to 98th) are all notable projects in Lubbock that Parkhill also completed with TxDOT. These projects were vital in creating opportunities for residential and commercial growth in the city.
The TXDOT Business Route I-20 Landscape and Visual Aesthetic Enhancement project in the Midland/Odessa area was a unique project in that it included both civil engineering and landscape architecture. The project was completed with the Permian Basin Regional Planning Commission, primary client, in addition to the team which included TxDOT. This 38-mile corridor landscape enhancement project extends through Midland and Ector Counties. The design included a series of large decorative steel panel screen walls and native plant groupings in a xeriscape throughout the industrial section of Odessa.
On the aviation side, Parkhill has completed many successful projects including a master plan and pavement rehabilitation project for the TxDOT Hale County/Plainview Airport Master Plan. This rehabilitation project was recognized in 2017 as TxDOT’s Most Improved General Aviation Airport. The airport improvement project consisted of pavement demolition, reconstruction of the tee-hangar apron pavement, Runway 4-22 pavement patching, construction of a perimeter road, an extension of storm drains, marking of runways and taxiways, pavement rehabilitation, grading, and runway lights and signage. Due to savings realized during construction, three supplemental wind cones and a new rotating beacon and tower were also able to be added.
Another aviation project through TxDOT was the reconstruction of the TxDOT Moore County Airport Runway 1-19 in 2013. This project quickly became a showcase for TxDOT since it involved private funding from Valero Energy Corporation. Moore County selected Parkhill to provide design services for the extension, widening, and rehabilitation of this runway. The existing Runway 1-19 was 5,474’ in length and 75’ wide. An extension of 526’ and widening of 25’ brought it to the 6,000’ length and 100’ width scoped for the project. The reconstructed pavement section now accommodates 60,000 lb aircraft.
Parkhill also completed the Moore County Airport Hangar in 2016. The project scope included a 10,500 SF box hangar with an 80’- x 20’ telescoping powered door for accommodating a large jet aircraft. Interior improvements included lighting, unit heaters, ventilation, spray-foam insulation, a trench drain for collection of nuisance water, and utility plumbing for connection to a new water well and septic system. Exterior improvements included 3,460 SY of 8-inch, jointed, reinforced concrete apron and taxiway designed to FAA geometric standards. Significant site grading was performed to accommodate drainage and on-site borrow, and taxiway edge reflectors were installed to current standards. This key project helped to stimulate economic activity and generate revenue for the Moore County Airport. The trusted advisor relationship with Moore County Airport continues with more plans to improve the airport. The Aviation Team was recently selected for another pavement rehabilitation project there.
Parkhill has served TxDOT through both the Transportation Sector and the Aviation Sector. The lengthy history of transportation services began in Lubbock in 1945. Teamwork with TxDOT has grown to serve many communities through an abundance of projects today.
City Bank is headquartered in Lubbock, Texas, and has 28 branch locations and 18 mortgage locations throughout Texas and New Mexico. For 20 years, Parkhill has been contracted with City Bank to perform exclusive interior design services. Many projects over these years have also involved each firm discipline representing both architecture and engineering.
The City Bank projects are uniquely designed around the community or client demographic they most closely serve. In 2007, Parkhill designed a branch location serving an Asian community in Houston, Texas, using the ancient design principles of Feng Shui. Parkhill also designed the branch location in Overton Park that features the iconic Spanish Renaissance style of Texas Tech University. This project was one of the showcase buildings placed as part of the redevelopment of North Overton, which began in 1999. The most recent projects feature comprehensive interiors — including commissioned painted artwork and photography — contributing to an impressive art collection. Each piece highlights meaningful subjects representing the history of the bank, the farming community, and local architecture.
City Bank’s culture of “passion” and “trustworthiness” closely aligns with Parkhill, which has forged meaningful relationships where Parkhill continues to serve as a trusted advisor. Many Parkhill and City Bank employees serve the community together through United Way, The Cattle Barron Ball supporting the American Cancer Society and many more. The relationship with City Bank runs deep. Parkhill continues to share that valued interest in Building Community with City Bank in all these service areas.
Parkhill has been making a difference Building Community in the Levelland community for decades. It began in 1954 with the city’s Water Works Improvement Plan. This project featured a new pump station and reservoir to supply water to the City of Levelland. The design could utilize the Canadian River water supply when available and with very little modification.
Parkhill’s project history includes projects as Lobo Lake Amphitheater, Levelland Oxy Sports Complex, and Levelland Industrial Rail Park Expansion as well as projects for water and wastewater treatment, TxDOT Levelland Municipal Airport Improvements, municipal solid waste, Covenant Hospital – Levelland, South Plains College and more in the past six decades.
For Levelland ISD, PSC began work on the 2013 bond program, including the assessment of 500,000 square feet of educational facilities, district master planning, bond campaign assistance, design, and construction phase services. Projects include Levelland ISD High School Renovations, Levelland ISD Intermediate School Interior Renovation, Levelland ISD Capitol Elem Renovations, Levelland ISD Interior Cactus Academic, Levelland ISD Facility Security Upgrades. The new 4,500 seat Levelland ISD New Lobo Stadium opened in 2015 and included a synthetic turf playing field, an eight-lane competition track, home/visitor field house, press box and concessions.
Parkhill is regarded as the Trusted Advisor for Levelland, engaging the resources of every firm business sector and design discipline.
Lubbock Preston Smith International Airport (LBB) has been a part of Parkhill’s history since the early 1950s. Some of the firm’s first projects with LBB, then called Lubbock Municipal Airport, were the N-S Runway Extension in 1956, the N-S Runway and Parallel Taxiway Airfield Markings in 1957, the Airport Master Plan in 1958, and the Lubbock Airport Terminal in the 1970s. James Atcheson of Atechson, Cartwright & Associates, the Lubbock architectural firm that merged with Parkhill in 1975, signed the drawings for the LBB Administration Building in 1948. This depth of history has laid the groundwork for the Trusted Advisor relationship PSC has with LBB today and years of projects that have aided the airport in serving national and international travelers as well as general aviation and military traffic.
Runway 17R-35L serves as the primary runway at LBB and is 11,500-feet long by 150-feet wide. The original runway was 40 years old before the recent Lubbock Preston Smith International Airport Runway 17R-35L Design rehabilitation and improvements project. Parkhill was awarded the 2016-2017 Texas Society of Professional Engineers for the innovative work.
Another runway reconstruction project led by Parkhill was the Lubbock Preston Smith International Airport Runway 8/26 Extension. This project improved the existing pavement that was 25 years old and improved airfield safety by remediating a “hot spot” that resulted from intersecting runways. Furthermore, the project involved the relocation of a 72-inch pipeline which serves as the primary artery for conveying water to the City of Lubbock from the panhandle. This critical element required significant Engaging Collaboration with multiple Parkhill sectors and around-the-clock construction effort to minimize disruption to the city’s water system.
Additional work by Parkhill at LBB includes a master plan update, projects to enhance the traveler experience as well as projects to improve the traffic flow and aircraft safety. Parkhill completed projects for the airport’s entrance road, relocation of the perimeter road, pedestrian wayfinding, the Patriot Plaza parking lot associated with the Silent Wings Museum, the terminal parking garage, terminal parking lot, and remodel of the terminal building with new restrooms, carpet and HVAC.
Asphalt shoulder rehabilitation, airfield drainage improvements, access control systems, terminal apron rehabilitation, the cargo apron, updated flight information display systems, general aviation/corporate hangar development and Taxiway L were all impacted over the years by the designs of the Aviation Sector.
El Paso Water is a pioneer in delivering the holy grail of sun-parched communities – reclaimed water. EP Water is often given credit for being the first in the world to create the first wastewater treatment plant that met drinking water standards for its reclaimed water and using it for aquifer groundwater recharge. The Fred Hervey Water Reclamation Plant (below), designed by Parkhill has been an innovative trendsetter around the world.
“Parkhill has been excellent in working with us throughout the 60 years,” said Felipe Lopez, one of the El Paso Water Utilities’ engineering division managers.
Through the years Parkhill has helped El Paso Water strengthen, build or analyze many projects, including inspection and design of numerous elevated and ground storage water tanks; a multitude of water and wastewater projects, including design at the city’s three water treatment plants like Jonathan Rogers WTP (below), and four wastewater treatment plants; early projects such as the Lower Valley Interceptor; the recent award-winning Canal Water Treatment Plant Tunnel project in Downtown El Paso; a comprehensive county-wide water and wastewater master plan for areas of El Paso County outside the city limits; problem-solving responses to the Storm of 2006, the Easy Way Wastewater Lift Station serving northwest El Paso that routed a pipeline under the Rio Grande and across I-10, state-of-the-art cloth media filters at the City’s Hickerson Water Reclamation Facility, and several upgrades to the Haskell Street Wastewater Treatment Plant including recent emergency replacement of the equipment its four primary clarifiers.
“Parkhill has helped us in almost every other project,” Lopez said. “They have been involved with us like fingers intertwined from one hand with the other.”
In response to a growing congregation of 30,000 people in multiple locations, Gateway Church engaged Parkhill to plan updates to its facilities in Frisco, Dallas and Southlake. It will be the largest church project in American history, and everything from the design process to solutions pushes the bounds of innovation to bring Gateway into a new era of integrated, relevant services.
Their flagship location in Southlake, as the largest, will see the most change. The new, 370,000-square-foot worship center will feature two chapels, seating 200 and 700 apiece, and even more options will be available on the lawn, where services will be shown on the large LED screen. The facility’s concentric design connects the interior and exterior spaces to bring families together in new ways. The playscape planned for the Southlake facility, for instance, is designed to promote imagination and is visible from the fitness center, so parents and guardians can get a workout in while watching their children play. When everybody gets hungry, they can visit the food hub that features four local restaurants, coffee, seating, and other activities.
The Frisco campus is also bursting at the seams. The sanctuary that currently sits 800 is running 4,000 people through four or five services, overflowing into classrooms. In response, the 70,000-square-foot campus, 58,000 of which is new construction, will include upgrades to administration, adult education and youth centers and will feature a new 1,2000-seat worship center to accommodate growth.
Parkhill is delivering the project through integrated project delivery, providing Gateway Church with an additional mechanism for understanding and controlling their project budget and schedule. The expansion and renovation work to these facilities will help families play, live, and worship together in the Gateway and surrounding communities.
In today’s residential development, the cost for services such as utilities, streets and other infrastructure is paid by the developer. These costs are then recouped through the individual lot price that the homeowner pays when a lot is purchased and a home is constructed. Unfortunately, this hasn’t always been the case.
The period following the end of World War II brought an economic period of growth that impacted the cities and towns which Parkhill provided engineering services. Each had their own needs and one of those was street paving. As many of the towns on the South Plains at this point were only in their fourth decade of existence, many did not have paved streets. Or if they did, there were no concrete curbs and gutters to carry stormwater runoff. Thus the need for paving in residential areas was identified as a one to improve the quality of life in the community. Paved streets not only helped with stormwater drainage, but it also eliminated the seemingly endless clouds of dust in neighborhoods created by the family car going to the store or dropping the kids off at school.
Street paving is not a city service that has a revenue source such as water, sanitary sewer or even gas. An equitable means of payment would have to be developed so the cost was no solely borne by the city, but rather shared by the neighbors that were receiving the paved streets. Thus was the paving assessment program was born that created a way to pay for the streets in residential areas that desired paving. Parkhill assisted many of the communities by developing plans and specifications for street construction. After received competitive bids and awarding a contract, Parkhill then determined the cost to be paid by the city as well as the property owners per lot frontage cost in front of their property. Landowners would then reimburse the city for the paving cost in front of their property. A shared cost that leads to an improved quality of life and another early example of Building Community.
Parkhill’s relationship with Midland College began when David Daniel became the institution’s third president in 1991. Kyle Womack, who worked for Parkhill for 43 years, was an active member of the Chamber of Commerce and was involved in the community interview process for the new president. Until that time, a Fort Worth architect had completed all work for the college. Shortly after settling into office, Dr. Daniel asked to meet with Kyle about re-sealing the parking lots on campus. That first exposure led to more work over 20 years, and PSC eventually became the primary architect for all the construction at Midland College. Dan Hart, FAIA, and Jay Edwards, PE, firm president, were also instrumental in the development and continuation of this relationship with Midland College.
“It is my belief that this firm delivers quality service in all facets of planning, design, and construction,” David said. “Having been in the college business for 43 years, I do have a sense of what constitutes the optimum in care, consultation, budget planning, and proper expedition of the plan. I have the firm belief that if you consider this firm, you will quickly see what rises to the top.”
Midland College has completed numerous projects with Parkhill over the past three decades including all campus master planning, and bond planning to accommodate the growth of the college. Specific projects include the F. Marie Hall Academic Building and University Center, three residence halls, the Fox Science Building, the Scharbauer Student Center Expansion and Renovation, the June and Frank Cowden, Jr. Dining Hall, the Jack E. Brown Dining Hall, the Dorothy and Todd Aaron Medical Sciences Building (a partnership with the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center) and the award-winning Dollye Neal Chapel.
Parkhill’s earliest projects often included landscape plantings and design as part of the typical services offered to clients. Early project examples are Lubbock’s Mae Simmons Swimming Complex and Buffalo Springs Lake Dam and Recreation area.
In 2001, Parkhill brought their first degreed and licensed landscape architect in-house and set out to not only provide these services with their architecture and engineering projects but also to build a robust landscape architectural practice as well. Notable projects are Lubbock’s 320-acre Overton Park Redevelopment, Glenna Goodacre Streetscape and the Rawls College of Business Landscape at Texas Tech University, Texas Tech System’s first LEED Gold project.
In 2018, the growing landscape architecture practice took another significant step forward with the merger of Parkhill and Schrickel Rollins and Associates of Arlington. SRA’s legendary history in the Dallas, Fort Worth and Central Texas markets bolstered Parkhill’s skills and brought new client relationships. Some of those relationships originated with the firm’s inception in 1955. SRA’s healthy practice and list of accomplishments are significant, including the I-35 Pedestrian Enhancements and Bridges in Arlington, the SITES-awarded University Green at the University of Texas Arlington and the Doubletree Ranch Park at Highland Village.
The landscape architecture group now includes 27 employees, 14 of which are registered landscape architects, and an active book of work. Notable site and landscape architectural projects include the Buddy Holly Hall of Performing Arts and Sciences, Midlothian Community Park Phase 2, the Arlington Abrams Street Sustainable Streetscape and Street Reconstruction project, and El Paso Coronado High School Renovation.
Jay grew up in O’Donnell, Texas and was hired by Parkhill as an Engineer in Training after graduating from Texas Tech University in 1990. In his more than 35 years of experience, he has gone on to serve as a Project Engineer, Project Manager, Client Manager, Sector Director the Chief Operations Officer for Strategy and Business Development and most recently Firm President and CEO. He was also named the 1999 Young Engineer of the Year by the Texas Society of Professional Engineers.
“Jay has served the firm and our clients in many capacities over the last 27 years,” Rapier said. “He has the leadership and ability to continue our mission of Building Community into the future.”
Parkhill’s mission of Building Community pushes each sector to exceed greatness in serving the firm’s clients, but perhaps the group that feels that obligation to the highest degree is the same group that bears the motto in their name – The Community Sector. As one of Parkhill’s original sectors from the firm’s reorganization in 2012, the Community Sector has a rich history of being what some have called a catch-all for projects that did not quite fit into the three initial Architecture Division Sectors: Higher Education, K-12 and Healthcare.
In addition to providing communities with municipal buildings, office spaces, churches, and more, the Community Sector completed odd jobs, including a couple of seed houses and a small building to conceal a flare, the result of an old, abandoned landfill that off-gasses methane very near where the Lubbock office is located today. In its earliest days, the Community Sector was “everything left,” says Executive Vice President of Operations Mike Moss.
As a result of this history, the Community Sector has always supported a culture of finding solutions to the client’s needs, regardless of the project type.
Today, with the creation of additional sectors, the Community Sector has likewise specialized its expertise, focusing on churches, municipal, and commercial facilities. In the coming years, the Community Sector looks to further build its staff and continue to grow its capabilities to provide superior thought leadership and design excellence.
Parkhill’s Mechanical, Electrical and Plumbing area and the Structural area were combined as part of an overall company re-structuring strategy in 2009 to make it a larger group and for efficiency.
Parkhill determined that having MEP in-house provided added benefits to our client base by establishing a collaborative effort between engineering and architecture, and a more coordinated design effort.
A couple of Parkhill’s early structural engineering projects include Fair Park Coliseum at the Panhandle-South Plains Fair Grounds and Texas Tech Jones Stadium.
In addition to supporting the other sectors, the MEP/S Sector also provides direct engineering support to a number of major clients, including Texas Department of Public Safety, K-12 School Districts, such as Seminole ISD, Texas Department of Criminal Justice, Texas Facilities Commission, such as the Texas School for the Deaf, Midland County, such as the Courts & Administration Building Renovation and the Buddy Holly Hall of Performing Arts and Sciences.
Schrickel, Rollins & Associates, Inc. (SRA) merged with Parkhill in 2018, diversifying its service offerings and building on Parkhill’s presence and culture in the DFW metroplex. The two firms had already worked together on several projects as partners and trusted advisors in each’s own right, and the many shared values made the merge only more natural.
One of the earliest projects the two firms worked together on was the Westside Regional Park in El Paso. The City of El Paso selected SRA to provide master planning for the park, detailed design of the recreation facilities, and landscape development. Parkhill provided site planning and design services to develop a conceptual site plan that would satisfy arroyo advocates, and hikers and bikers thirsty for new trails. The firm also wanted a design that would overall be a beneficial use of precious open space. The project met its goals and won two AIA El Paso awards and the Silver Medal Award from TCEC.
Parkhill gained valuable skills and experience that have helped the firm stay competitive in DFW and led to the formation of the new Landscape Architecture and Planning Sector. SRA gained exposure to new markets and project types as well, strengthening its expertise and creating opportunities for new kinds of innovative projects as a team.
The most recent finished landscape architecture projects include Frank Kent’s Dream Park in Fort Worth, Doubletree Ranch Park, Multipurpose Complex at Old Settler’s Park, and Southlake North Park. Current projects include the Buddy Holly Hall of Performing Arts and Sciences, and Gateway Church Expansion.
Parkhill has been involved with the planning, design, and construction of El Paso’s drainage infrastructure since the office opened in 1958. Notable projects for Parkhill include:
City of El Paso’s 1960 Master Drainage Plan – Identified key drainage improvements in response to severe flooding in 1958/1959 and established storm design criteria that would be used by the City of El Paso for the next 50 years
Government Hill Outfall, Early 1970s – This 90-inch diameter storm drain routes stormwater from the foothills on the east side of the Franklin Mountains to the Rio Grande River, which allowed for the construction of I-10, the “Spaghetti Bowl,” and Highway 54.
Lower Valley Flood Control, late 1960s – Major drainage improvements and construction of flood control basins to protect existing development in the Lower Valley (today called the Mission Valley) from flooding and made it safe for future development
Lee Trevino Drainage Improvement Phase I & II Projects, 2010 and 2011 – 24-inch through 66-inch underground storm drain system that eliminated severe flooding issues in one of the city’s busiest thoroughfares
Ridge View/Bear Ridge Channel Improvements Construction, 2018 – Drainage improvements to replace damaged channel caused by severe flash flooding in the foothills of the Franklin Mountains in Northwest El Paso
When Natural Gas Services Group needed a new headquarters, it turned to Parkhill to engage in an innovative and collaborative design for the Midland-based energy company.
This design-build project with Teinert Construction broke ground in 2017 and was finished in 2019. The collaborative effort for the office design and implementation engaged professionals from six of Parkhill’s offices – Abilene, Amarillo, El Paso, Frisco, Lubbock and Midland. This unique design-build involved multiple sectors and disciplines across the entire firm, including architecture, civil engineering, interior design, landscape architecture and MEP/Structural.
The finished product is a high-end, modern facility that also reflects the warm, rustic touches of the West Texas environment and Big Bend area.
This 45,000 GSF office building is the new NGSG corporate headquarters. It provides a much-needed upgrade facility for its staff and has room for rental spaces on two levels, as well. Parkhill provided architectural design services, landscape architecture, interior design and FFE (furniture, fixtures and equipment) services.
The public entry is accented with locally sourced native Texas limestone. The building is designed with attention to energy conservation, including high-performance glass, solar sun shades to cut glare and heat gain as well as landscape design that utilizes native plantings for water conservation, complementing building amenities like an outdoor terrace for employee and client gatherings.
“We’re a West Texas group, and we wanted the building to reflect that,” said Steve Taylor, CEO of NGSG. “Everything worked out great. The furnishings fit in well with the Earth tones, and all the natural pieces of it is what really brings it out.”
The City of Big Spring has been a client of Parkhill since 1946, and in that long relationship, Parkhill has enjoyed many opportunities to live its mission of Building Community by creating inventive, relevant built environments together. Parkhill’s services have improved the community’s municipal infrastructure by maintaining regulatory compliance, providing for service expansions, and improving quality of life through community amenities. One of the firm’s early projects in Big Spring was West Texas’ first sewage treatment plant that reclaimed water for industrial use in the early 1950s.
The citizens enjoy affordable, regulatory-compliant water, sewer, and municipal solid waste services, transportation systems, upscale recreational facilities, including a municipal pool and sports complex, and a thriving industrial, aviation complex. Education in Big Spring includes new K-12 schools for Big Spring ISD and projects at Howard College – all delivered through the dedication and expertise of Parkhill. Big Spring has trusted Parkhill to design their community, a trust earned through outstanding client service and innovative approaches. Every business sector and every discipline has had a role in building the Big Spring community.
“Parkhill’s relationship with the city feels like family,” said their former client manager of nearly 40 years and Parkhill’s former director of engineering, Butch Davis. “We love and take care of each other.”
The Site Development and Planning Sector prepares a site for construction by designing utilities, stormwater, elevations, and accounting for FEMA flood maps, existing activities and land entitlement that could affect new construction. These kinds of projects include single-family development for residential development, floodplain coordination and working with a city for road rehabilitation and future city planning.
Stormwater design, as a part of site development and planning, maintains drainage and directs potentially harmful stormwater away from a site. One example of this type of design is the Bear Ridge Channel in El Paso. This project improved an existing channel to prevent future damage of a residential area after a record-breaking storm. Another example is the South Central Lubbock Drainage Improvements in Lubbock that connect 11 playa lakes to drain 19.5 square miles of residential and commercial areas and discharge floodwater into the Yellowhouse Canyon.
The beginning of Parkhill’s most notable land development work began with the development of Grasslands Estates for the Scharbauer Brothers Company, LP, in 1986. Until that time, Kyle Womack, a civil engineer who established the Midland office, had completed some minor land development projects in the Midland area. Growth of PSC’s site development and planning expertise helped validate the establishment of the Midland office in 1979 and later the Site Development and Planning Sector in 2015.
The land development work with Scharbauer Brothers Company, LP, is one of the most historically significant land development entities in Midland over the last 40 years. This 20,000-acre project resulted in a flexible blueprint for land development that addressed mixed-use residential, office, local retail, commercial, industrial, sports facilities, a golf course, warehousing, parks, schools, medical complexes, and aviation-related developments. This Master Land-Use Plan has been a tremendous planning document and guideline for development in Midland. The first phase of construction for Grassland Estates began in 1986 as part of the City of Midland’s goal to create quality residential subdivisions. Additional work for SBC includes the Scharbauer Sports Complex and Development project in 1999.
Since 2002, Parkhill has partnered with the most active developer in Midland, Mark Payne of Mark Payne Homes. This team has developed over 215 acres and created master plans for an additional 400 acres in and around Midland. The result has been the successful completion of 10 major development projects, with much more acreage laid out through a master plan and preliminary plats. The highlight of these projects is a new master-planned community in northern Midland with two privately- operated man-made ponds in Woodland Park. The ponds function as tiered flood control basins and are the centerpiece of a 12-acre neighborhood park with a jogging trail that encircles it all.
LEDA Business Park in Lubbock is another notable land development project. Parkhill completed a study that provided the evaluation, assessment, and recommendations for site development to be proactive in targeting industry recruitment. The master plan study of the 586-acre site developed site layouts, street configurations, and design guidelines for the development. Parkhill also designed phase-one engineering plans for the park’s streets and utilities, as well as many of the extensions and on-site improvements. The adjacency to Lubbock Preston Smith International Airport required engaging collaboration between the Site Development and Aviation Sectors.
Site development and planning are also a significant portion of Juniper Residence Hall on the New Mexico State University Campus in Las Cruces and additions and renovations to El Paso ISD’s Coronado High School in El Paso. The design of each of these projects account for existing site plans to expand facilities for growth in the student population and educational programming.
Parkhill has also completed site design for several oil and gas campuses in Midland, including Chevron, EOG, Anadarko, Oxy, PAAP, and NGSG, as well as sites for other sectors like the Texas Tech University’s United Spirit Arena.
Planning efforts include Tall City Tomorrow, which is a Midland comprehensive plan, the Midland Impact Fee Study, the Kermit Comprehensive Plan and New Zoning Code, and the ongoing Abilene Regional Airport Land Planning Study.
In 2014, Parkhill sought out to create a statement to align with its work, company and employees. The group tasked with this endeavor came up with three pieces: Mission (why we exist), Vision (what we imagine), and Values (how we go about our work).
The mission statement of “Building Community by creating inventive, relevant built environments together” has become the centerpiece for Parkhill’s professional and philanthropical services. That leads into the company’s Vision of “Transforming Communities by facilitating an extraordinary, enlightening client experience that results in making visions reality.”
The company adopted 11 Values that were split into two categories: Collective Values and Individual Values.
In 1979, Parkhill opened the Midland office, which is today located on Wall Street less than a mile from Downtown Midland. The firm has owned the two story, concrete structure since 2008 and designed a total interior renovation since occupying the building. The Midland office currently houses nearly 50 professionals from many of Parkhill sectors from Transportation to Aviation, CPS/CM/Survey, MEP/S, Site Development & Planning, K-12 and Higher Education.
Parkhill opened the Midland office on the strength of Kyle Womack’s relationship with Midland International Airport. “He knew a lot of people and built relationships throughout the community. He was key to the success of the office growing so much, I believe – I really do,” said Darcy Knight, the Midland office’s first bookkeeper.
One of the most notable of Parkhill’s projects in the Midland area was the Midland Airport Terminal, which opened in 1999. Womack led the team that researched terminals across the nation to develop design ideas for what would become the award-winning new terminal. “At the time we did the Midland Airport Terminal, it was the largest public works project the city had done,” Kyle said. “More importantly, the public support for this project resulted in a bond election that was approved by over 90% of the population.”
Marv Esterly, the former director of airports for the Midland International Air and Space Port, remembers those years, saying “The Parkhill team was always willing to go the extra mile, and I attribute that to the leadership initially instilled by Womack and later continued by Jay Edwards.”
Danny Winchester continued that trusted advisor relationship through one of the most recent projects with Midland Air and Space Port, leading the airport through a master plan that included extensive utility, roadway, and drainage analysis and coordination, as well as architectural, landscaping and aviation elements.
The success of the Midland office stems from the support of our clients and the dedication of all our staff to truly invest themselves in Building Community. A notable project included the Scharbauer Sports Complex. Bobby Burns, president and CEO of the Midland Chamber of Commerce and former mayor, said Kyle and Jay were vital in the multipurpose sports complex– which included Security Bank Ballpark, a 5,000-seat AA professional baseball stadium and Grande Communications Stadium, a state-of-the-art football & soccer stadium.
The award-winning Midland T-Bar Well Field and Pipeline was completed in 2013 and included 45 production wells, 67 miles of 58-inch pipeline, and 20 miles of 8-to-36-inch collection lines to provide Midland with water for many years.
The City of Amarillo began master planning the development of the Potter County Well Field in 2005 as a reaction to increased reductions in surface water allocations from the Canadian River Municipal Water Authority. Population growth increased water demand and groundwater depletion.
This historically significant project was completed in 2011 and is the largest infrastructure project in Amarillo’s history.
The final design of Potter County Well Field resulted in an initial well field production capacity of 20 million gallons per day (MGD) with an ultimate capacity of 30 MGD. Construction of this project resulted in 21 wells, approximately 21 miles of collection pipelines, a pump station, and about 21 miles of transmission pipeline. Routing of the collection system coincides with the location of the access roadways and the overhead electric power distribution system forming a utility corridor resulting in very efficient use of easements.
Well-buildings were designed to include a durable pre-cast structure to house the motor control equipment and the instrumentation. Design requirements for the electrical system needed for well-pumping equipment were especially challenging. Submersible motor sizes would dictate the use of medium voltage starting equipment. However, owner preference was to use lower voltage starting equipment yet sustain the use of medium voltage pumping equipment. This required incoming voltage to be transformed down to 480-volts through the starting equipment then transformed up to medium voltage downhole. Cost savings of medium voltage downhole pumping equipment and power cable were significant.
Pump station parameters utilized horizontal split case pumping equipment, including three equally sized pumps with a future location for a fourth unit that would yield a firm pumping capacity of 30 MGD.
Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) systems were designed for this new well field and pump station, yielding a fully automated system. Designers were also responsible for modifications to SCADA equipment and programming in other locations to allow for the addition of this project’s control and monitoring.
Learning environments are changing substantially to adapt to the way children learn; today’s students are digital natives. Often, the building can significantly impact that new focus.
More and more El Paso area schools are embracing 21st-century learning environments through Parkhill’s designs. With Clint Independent School District’s 2015 successful Bond Referendum, the school leadership desired to advance 21C designs, which began with the Carroll T. Welch Elementary School, then W.D. Surratt Elementary. The incorporation of collaborative learning areas, HUB areas, one-to-one spaces, folding glass partitions, and natural light to the additions at these two schools made for an engaging learning environment.
The new-look of Mountain View High School in far East El Paso resembles a Tier 1 college campus with state-of-the-art technology and design. The design took into consideration the existing colonnade of trees, and the building opens to a view of them. Clint Independent School District set the bar in West Texas for a top-tier medical learning facility for a high school and a teen-friendly cafetorium at the same campus. Parkhill designed the additions and renovations project for Clint ISD.
Horizon High School in Clint ISD included a Career & Technology Building, a new cafetorium that gives the campus a completely new facade, a classroom wing, a courtroom classroom, a secure main entry, and new tennis courts as well as a much-needed additional parking lot. Interior aesthetic improvements to bring life and color into the corridors, security, and site improvements were a focus in Clint’s Montana Vista Elementary School.
Parkhill is currently engaged with the area’s largest district, El Paso ISD, in transforming its Coronado High School into a 21st-century classroom setting with a unique courtyard, a three-story administration/classroom building, a new two-story fieldhouse and other site amenities.
Juan Cabrera, superintendent of El Paso ISD, said of Parkhill, “They’ve been a big help with casting that vision and capturing that vision as well at Coronado High School. Every one of our classrooms needs to allow for active, engaging, collaborative learning, and that’s another way of saying no rows and desks.”
Parkhill has also assisted Socorro ISD with master planning and designing one of the newest high schools, the award-winning Pebble Hills High School.
Ysleta ISD selected Parkhill to design a two-story classroom building addition for a sixth through eighth-grade wing for Parkland Middle School as well as a two-story classroom building for Parkland High School. Some earlier projects for Ysleta ISD also included the Library and Kitchen/Cafeteria Addition to Vista Hills Elementary School and a fine arts Wing to Del Valle High School, which included band room, orchestra, choir, and Art rooms and streamlined the access of visitors with the inclusion of the main commons corridor to leading to the competition gymnasium.
Parkhill’s designs have also helped transform smaller communities. For example, the firm was selected by Anthony Independent School District to design a library addition to their existing high school. The 3,000-square-foot library also serves as a technology center for the community with computer labs and a conference room. Additionally, Parkhill assisted in transforming their athletic facilities to include new grandstands and a press box.
And in Van Horn, the new 21st-century Culberson County-Allamoore ISD Pre-K to 12th Grade School facility features collaborative spaces, one-to-one spaces, open hub areas with an abundance of natural light filtering down through the skylights, and classroom walls with folding partitions that allow more flexibility and an engaging environment for the students and teachers in classes as innovative as drones and robotics.
The Water Resources Sector handles projects of many types, including water wells, storage tanks, pump stations, water and wastewater transmission lines, distribution and collection lines, force mains, lift stations, water and wastewater planning and modeling, and more. Building such a breadth of expertise was a key reason to create Parkhill’s first market sectors from 2009-2012.
When Parkhill reorganized into sectors as part of the firm’s StepUp2012 initiative, Parkhill’s Board defined four sectors in the Civil Division: Transportation, Public Works, Environmental and Infrastructure. The Water Resources team was initially the Infrastructure Sector until January 2018 when the team was renamed. The change brought Parkhill’s services more in line with the industry organization. It allowed Water Resources to specialize and deepen the team’s assistance to Parkhill’s clients.
That assistance with many clients over the years led to many award-winning projects such as Midland T-Bar Well Field Development, ClearWater Ranch, Lake Alan Henry Water Supply Project, Borger Northwest Well Field and El Paso Water’s Clardy Fox Area Drainage Improvements.
Looking forward, the sector looks to grow its relationships with its current clients, continuing its service as trusted advisors and building relationships with new clients. The team is also focusing on developing its knowledge base to ensure clients continue to receive a high level of service.
Beginning in the 1990s, Parkhill worked with Tomcat USA, Inc., in Midland, an aluminum truss and roof grid manufacturer, on behalf of entertainment companies and music artists including Disneyland, Atlantic City, Sea World, Lord of the Dance, Bellagio Trapeze Act, Rolling Stones, Janet Jackson and Pink Floyd to design structures for large entertainment venues.
Parkhill provided engineering design services for the support structures used in the 1994 Pink Floyd Concert Tour designed by British Architect Mark Fisher. Through this structural design project, Parkhill gained expertise in the entertainment industry through its association with Tomcat. Aluminum structures supported stage lighting, large-screen video monitors, and a mirrored ball 26 feet in diameter. An arch with a 260-foot radius supported the lighting equipment over the stage. The video monitor support was a circular suspended truss with a 37-foot circle plan view. A self-erecting tower structure was supporting the mirror ball as part of the special-effect display.
In October 1991, Tomcat authorized Parkhill’s structural division to design and analyze a 57-foot-by-48-foot roof grid system with two 20-foot-by-17-foot sound wings for “The Pit on the University of New Mexico Campus in Albuquerque. This type of system was designed to be erected outdoors with guy wire bracing, a tension cable system.
One of the main obstacles in designing this system for the indoor application was to provide tower bases that would not damage the existing wooden basketball floor. Parkhill designed a base system that limited bearing pressures to allowable levels that could be easily assembled and disassembled.
Another exciting feature of this project was that some of the towers had to bear on the existing concrete floor of the seating area. Parkhill analyzed the construction drawings and core sample data given by the University to determine the allowable capacity of the current construction. Unique bases were designed according to this analysis.
A similar grid system was designed in September 1991 for New Mexico State University in Las Cruces. Tomcat teamed with Parkhillto design and analyze a 54-foot-by-30-foot grid system to be used on campus. The rectangular grid was designed to be suspended from an existing building structure. A complete report was produced on the grid system outlining allowable loads on the main trusses and intermediate trusses. The maximum capacity of the grid system was determined as well as the maximum pick up point reactions.
In 1994, TOMCAT and Parkhill teamed up again to construct a tower for a band called “Dreams Come True.” Jay Edwards, now president and CEO, was hired as the project manager. The band was planning to do a concert tour and wanted a special stage where the crowd could see the band from all sides. The stage design was 50 to 60 feet tall, and outriggers were about 100 feet long. The guitarists could run out on this part of the stage like a runway and play in the middle of the crowd.
“We’re privileged to work on a wide variety of project types,” said Roland Holder, Structural Team Leader, “and being under the same roof allows for more seamless collaboration with the project teams.”
This expertise led to structural engineering on other notable structures over the years including Midland Air Terminal, Midland Scharbauer Sports Complex Baseball Field, and Methodist Heart Tower, which had six floors with the capability to expand to 10 floors. A unique project PSC designed is the PYCO Cotton Oil Mill on East 50th Street in Lubbock. This seed storage warehouse project was a close collaboration with the owner, contractor, engineer, fabricator, and erectors. It was a unique cooperative environment that delivered a facility that stores the unprocessed seed. Buddy Holly Hall is an ongoing project that PSC is providing structural services for in Lubbock.
Before Tittle Luther merged with Parkhill, it designed dozens of projects in a “convergence of healing forces” for Hendrick Medical Center over the past 54 years, both on and off of their main campus in North Abilene. Parkhill’s relationship with Hendrick began in 1966 with the Meek Wing Addition to HMC, and spans over 5 decades. At least 14 major campus additions were completed through the years including the Hendrick Medical Center Project 2010.
Parkhill/TLP continued this tradition through the years with newer projects such as the Hendrick Medical Plaza & Emergency Care Center that opened in 2017, Hendrick Hospice Care & Bereavement Center in 2017, Hendrick Medical Plaza-Brownwood in 2018, and Hendrick Dialysis Center in 2019.
The largest have been the 1970 Collier Wing Addition, the 1980 Parker Wing Addition, the 1993 Hendrick Center for Rehabilitation, the Hendrick Medical Center Michael C. Waters Trauma Center, Hendrick Medical Plaza and Emergency Center and by far, the Hendrick Medical Center Project 2010. Now called the Jones Building, this project features over 200,000 square feet including new Surgical and Support Suites with Orthopedic, Neurological, Cardiovascular and Hybrid ORs, Pediatric Suite, Obstetrical/LDR Suite, LTAC Hospital, Med/Surg Suites, Wound Care Suite, Dialysis Suite, Infusion Suite, Med Spa and Physician Office Suites, as well as a new main entrance and admissions/discharge suite.
Overall, the medical center projects offer diagnostics, treatment and recovery facilities, public spaces, wellness spaces such as Hendrick Health Club, clinical spaces and healing spaces.
Parkhill’s Treatment Team has a long tradition of serving communities since the company’s inception in 1945. This experience includes the disciplines necessary to fully support the private and public sector’s water and wastewater treatment engineering needs. Parkhill’s philosophy has always been to partner its comprehensive, multidiscipline practice and dedicated team members with clients to help them identify and address their current and future water and wastewater treatment solutions.
This dedication and philosophy have led to numerous landmark projects over the last 75 years to bring communities the water it needs and started a long-standing partnership in El Paso with El Paso Water. One of the first of its kind, the Fred Hervey Water Reclamation Plant in Northeast El Paso takes domestic wastewater and produces potable water that meets state and nation drinking water standards through a rigorous treatment process.
The Jonathan W. Rogers Water Treatment Plant, a state-of-the-art facility located in El Paso and designed by Parkhill in 1993, was named the prestigious Grand Award Winner by the American Consulting Engineers Council in 1995. The plant features several unique processes, including ozonation – something new to El Paso at the time – and biological activated carbon (BAC), a relatively new concept in America at the time.
Forward thinking and application carried on to several award-winning treatment projects in the last few years including the Wheeler Reverse Osmosis Treatment Plant (2017 ACEC Texas Gold and National Recognition) and Lake Alan Henry South Water Treatment Plant in Lubbock.
Mechanical, electrical and plumbing (MEP) services were added to Parkhill’s in-house services in 1994. PSC determined that having MEP in-house provided added benefit by creating closer collaborative efforts and consulting efforts between the client, engineers and architects. This side-by-side development resulted in more coordinated design efforts as well as more successful projects overall. With extensive experience in their field, MEP engineers provide in-house support to our architectural projects but also function as the lead designers on many projects including lighting, HVAC upgrades, SCADA, airport security, and emergency and standby generators.
Ken Johnson, who started at Parkhill in 1994, joined the firm to support civil engineering projects with SCADA system design, airfield lighting and all mechanical and electrical aspects of MEP projects. Some of the first MEP projects included the Fort Stockton Reverse Osmosis Water Treatment Plant in 1993 and an elevated storage tank for the Town of Anthony located near El Paso in 1995.
Parkhill’s mechanical engineers have extensive experience with central utility plant systems, split systems, or packaged rooftop equipment. These engineers are very familiar with fresh air and humidity requirements for proper indoor air quality as well as energy code requirements, which help to create designs that are most economical for clients.
MEP provides direct engineering support to a number of clients including the Texas Department of Public Safety, Texas Department of Criminal Justice and Texas Facilities Commission.
Other notable projects include central utility plants for several higher education facilities in Texas including Howard College, Midland College, Western Texas College and Texas School for the Deaf. Parkhill also completed Texas Tech University Life Safety Projects for several buildings including the Horn/Knapp Dormitories and the TTU Museum, laboratory design for the Texas Department of Public Safety Lubbock Regional Headquarters (TFC), and Natatoriums at Fort Stockton ISD High School, Jal Public Schools Aquatics Center and Monahans.
Parkhill’s Amarillo office is on the second floor of the historic Levine’s Department Store building in Downtown Amarillo. Since the Amarillo office’s establishment in 1992, its fourth location is a significant example of classic modern design with Art Deco detailing. In 2011, Parkhill merged with WD Architects, which expanded this office’s services from primarily engineering to include a full complement of architectural services. This level of expertise and experience allows Parkhill to accommodate the area’s 21st Century public-sector needs above the ground, below the surface and everywhere in between.
Significant area projects include the Ware College Student Lab at Amarillo College, Louise and Gene Rahll Education Center at Frank Phillips College in Dalhart, and Shops at Fifth Avenue in Canyon. Two recent civil projects lead by the Amarillo office — Borger Northwest Well Field and the Wheeler Reverse Osmosis Facility projects — were both honored with a Texas ACEC gold medal for Engineering Excellence in Texas and nationally recognized by ACEC.
C. Clayton Yeager joined the engineering staff of Parkhill in 1975. He earned his Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering from Texas Tech University in 1964 and his Master of Science in Civil Engineering in 1965. In 1977 he became a Parkhill stockholder and in 1986 the firm’s Board of Directors named him President.
He served as Principal-in-Charge/Project Manager for numerous major civil engineering projects, including wastewater collection, treatment and disposal facilities, sanitary landfill facility design and permits, water supply, distribution and storage facilities; street paving and storm drainage facilities, and other municipal facility projects. In 1996 Yeager was named a Distinguished Engineer by Texas Tech Whitacre College of Engineering. The Texas Society of Professional Engineers honored him as a TSPE Fellow of the Foundation. He retired in 2006.
One of the earliest engineering services by Parkhill for Texas Tech University was the construction of Jones Stadium in 1946. But one of the largest endeavors was when the East Side of Jones Stadium was moved back in 1959-60 in order to enlarge the stadium and convert it into a bowl-like structure.
The construction was necessary to fulfill obligations promised when Texas Tech entered the Southwest Conference in 1956. Parkhill helped Texas Tech accomplish the feat by using railroad rails and greased rollers. The east stands were cut into five sections. Huge crowds gathered each time movers shifted the stands.
Parkhill began working for Lubbock-Cooper ISD in 1994 based on a relationship Mike Moss had developed with the former Superintendent Mike Caplinger and Business Manager Cecil Mardis. Parkhill’s first project with the district included remediation work from a building foundation settlement problem and a small addition at Lubbock-Cooper High School. Since that project, over a dozen Parkhill projects have quadrupled the size of the high school campus to over 350,000 SF.
Rapid district growth spurred the development of multiple new campuses, including two new middle schools (Laura Bush Middle School and Lubbock-Cooper Middle School), five new elementary schools (North, West, Central, East and South), athletics stadium complexes (football, baseball, softball, tennis, soccer, and a practice fieldhouse), a new central office, a bus maintenance facility, ag facilities, a career technology & vocational building, a cosmetology building and many other support facilities.
Infrastructure projects have included a water pipeline connecting to the city’s system, water/wastewater treatment and a traffic study for the redesign of the south campuses. To date, Lubbock-Cooper has worked with 12 of Parkhill’s 13 sectors and every discipline, including Architecture, Interior Design, Landscape Architecture, Surveying along with Civil, Structural and MPE Engineering. L-CISD was also an early adopter of 21st-Century Educational principles. It began with 30,000 SF of 21C wing additions to three elementary campuses. In 2016, East Elementary became the district’s first school to fully integrate this innovative type of learning with collaborative neighborhoods and flexible classroom spaces. The Discovery Center is a flexible space that incorporates a series of projectors to highlight different educational themes and concepts on the surrounding walls, floor and ceiling. This space can also be closed off from the rest of the school for after-hours community use.
Lubbock-Cooper Independent School District has been a Parkhill client for over 25 years. The district has since grown to over 1.3 million SF of educational facilities, and Parkhill has designed nearly 95 percent of its current building areas.
Airports are an integral part of our communities and influence our lives in many ways. The Parkhill Aviation Team focuses on building community through relevant, impactful airport projects that help impact positive passenger experience and strengthened airport operation. Parkhill’s involvement in aviation includes a full range of services to support private, general aviation, military, and commercial air carrier airports. The goal is to partner Parkhill’s comprehensive, multidisciplinary practice and dedicated Aviation Sector members with airport staff to help identify challenges and address strategy for addressing current and future maintenance and development needs.
Parkhill has developed trusted advisor relationships with numerous airport clients by providing long-term, full-service planning, engineering, and architectural design, construction administration and on-site resident project representative assistance and project closeout services. This partnership across the full project continuum has led to several successful and even award-winning projects over the last 75 years, positively impacting communities, passengers and travel.
Recent recognized projects include the Midland International Air and Space Port Master Plan and Terminal Building (AIA — Lubbock Chapter Bi-Annual Design Awards — Citation of Excellence), Hemphill County Airport Improvements (2015 TxDOT Most Improved Airport), Hale County Airport (2017 TxDOT Most Improved Airport) and Lubbock Preston Smith International Airport Runway 17R-35L Rehabilitation, which won the 2018 TSPE South Plains Chapter Trailblazer Award.
Companies must continually evolve to stay relevant, innovative, and competitive. “It’s important to understand,” says Former Parkhill President Joe Rapier, “our market was stagnating as our clients turned to national-scale firms for expertise… many times, we were not perceived as the experts in their current challenge.” The challenge was, “We were viewed as a local firm with a broad range of services.”
To change that perception, Parkhill’s leadership decided to reorganize as part of the firm’s StepUp2012 initiative. The plan, starting with the creation of the 10 original sectors in 2008, was launched at the University of Parkhill 2009 and would complete the transition by 2012. The development changed more than just the firm’s roles and responsibilities; it affected Parkhill’s culture.
“We’ve always been a firm with a deep connection to the communities where we live and work,” said Joe. “There were also strong relationships and roles, and it was uncomfortable for us to shake up our roles to take on new challenges. We were asking people to become experts in a vertical market and less general in their geographic market.”
Parkhill is currently organized into two divisions: architecture and civil engineering. Architectural Operations includes Community, Healthcare, Higher Education, K-12, MEP/Structural, and Landscape Architecture and Planning. Civil Operations includes Aviation, CPS/CM/Survey, Environmental, Site Development and Planning, Transportation, Treatment and Water Resources.
Once Parkhill settled into the new organization, the firm regained a competitive edge in its business markets. Since the new sectors aligned with industry titles and names, clients began to recognize Parkhill’s ability to better provide specialized services.
“We now deliver high-level expertise to the communities in which we live and work,” Joe said. “I don’t think we lost any of the strong bonds to our communities; I think we have strengthened them,” said Joe.
Frisco was Parkhill’s first office location in the DFW area. Since its establishment in 2015, the Frisco team has grown from primarily serving the Community Sector to providing Landscape Architecture & Planning, K-12, Treatment and Environmental expertise among others.
The current office is located in beautiful Hall Park, a 162-acre development with more than 2.5 million square feet of office space and the Texas Sculpture Garden, which has more than 200 works created by artists from all over the world.
Samuel Clarence Cooper started his engineering career in Crosbyton, Texas, in 1924 as a bookkeeper, abstractor and rodman. In 1929 he joined the Texas Highway Department and County Surveyor in Sweetwater, Texas. Cooper then became a topography recorder for the Municipal Engineering Company of Dallas.
He served this and other firms in Texas until 1933 when he returned as an instrumentman, office engineer and inspector for the Texas Highway Department in Coleman, Texas. Following that, Cooper became associated with the firm of Haynes & Strange, Parkhill, Voelcker & Dixon until he was asked to be the City Engineer of Big Spring. He then remained a partner with Parkhill beginning with its inception in 1945.
Stormwater drainage is not usually a hot topic among West Texas residents and specifically in Lubbock, Texas. The City of Lubbock retained Parkhill to design a storm drainage relief system for 12 urban lakes over a 14-mile project reach in order to establish constant water levels in those lakes and for control of stormwater runoff.
Parkhill recommended a subsurface pipeline drainage system as the best option. This system connects playa lakes beginning north of South Plains Mall along South Loop 289. The design team reviewed city maps and analyzed 33 alternatives and alignments to develop a practical route with the least existing utility conflicts for a gravity pipeline storm drainage relief system.
The 11 lakes drain 19.5 square miles, connected by subsurface pipelines that discharge floodwater into the Yellowhouse Canyon (the North Fork of the Double Mountain Fork of the Brazos River). The project spans the entire east-west limits of Lubbock and is in an entirely urban-developed area. It involved deep installation depths, 13.6 miles of pipe, and reaches the Brazos River through a 5-mile long segment of 72-inch pipe. This landmark project would eventually lead to other key stormwater projects, including Northwest Lubbock Drainage Improvements.
This national award-winning project required #EngagingCollaboration with a broad range of stakeholders and the use of extensive computer simulation, aerial photography, digital terrain model development, surveying, geotechnical investigation, ground-penetrating radar survey, topography, and the development of comprehensive plans and specifications. Awards included 2004 Texas Council of Engineering Companies Engineering Excellence Gold Medal Award, Eminent Conceptor Award, 2004 ACEC (Washington DC) Engineering Excellence Awards National Finalist, 2004 Texas Public Works Association Project of the Year – Environmental Projects Greater than $10 million construction.
Parkhill has worked alongside several leaders of the Plainview Community personifying the Parkhill Purpose and exemplifying the firm’s Mission, Vision and Values through many projects, volunteer opportunities and relationships.
Parkhill’s trusted adviser relationship with Plainview began in 1947 and has grown with each opportunity. That assistance led to community master plans, the city’s most significant and most important capital improvement projects, bond elections, public meetings or advising council, the county commissioners court and various boards within the community. Parkhill provides real innovation solutions to Plainview — whether in the form of straightforward advice or a way to remedy a significant urgent problem.
Parkhill’s work impacts the Plainview community through nearly all disciplines and sectors, including Healthcare, Higher Ed, K-12, Aviation, Transportation, CPS/CM/Survey, Environmental, Site Development & Planning, Treatment and Water Resources. That inspired contribution also carries over into the Building Community Investment program. College Hill Elementary School desperately needed a new playground for its 440 students. In 2017, Parkhill gave a $20,000 grant and provided $5,000 in pro-bono services to purchase a new playscape, update and refurbish the current playground equipment, develop a site civil plan, demolish and remove old material, install new equipment and add landscaping.
Parkhill has also recently completed up the Plainview Business Park project and worked on Plainview City Hall Renovations, assisted Plainview ISD with its new facilities and upgrades after a successful bond campaign in 2019 and has worked with Wayland Baptist University on several projects.
The best designs cannot come to fruition without support from a strong construction administration team. Parkhill has offered construction phase administration and construction management services through its history. In 2018, Parkhill organized all of the field staff, along with the survey team, into a specialized Construction Phase Services/Construction Management/Survey Sector (CPS/CM/Survey Sector).
Parkhill adapts its construction services from small projects that need Resident Project Representative (RPR) support to large multi-discipline projects requiring full construction management and informed insight. Services typically provided by construction management staff include construction observation, constructability reviews, value engineering, construction negotiations, and independent construction estimates.
Key recent projects include El Paso International Airport Reconstruction of Runway 4-22 CM Services, Lubbock Preston Smith International Airport Runway 17R-35L Design, and Amarillo Seal Coat Construction Management project in which more than 2 million square yards of streets resurfaced. The El Paso Water Canal Tunnel — which required a 66-inch diameter, 570-foot-long long tunnel under 18 active tracks of a nearby railyard — was also recently awarded Gold by ACEC Texas and recognized by ACEC National in Washington, D.C.
Texas Legislation formally created the Canadian River Municipal Water Authority (CRWMA) in 1953. Repeated and prolonged droughts in the 1930s and 1950s inspired 11 Texas cities to collaborate in the creation of CRMWA. Lake Meredith and its associated infrastructure served these members well, beginning in 1965 when the lake started impounding water.
With the desire to improve the quality of water from Lake Meredith, CRMWA started pursuing a source of superior quality groundwater in 1994. Parkhill had provided engineering services to most of CRMWA’s 11-member cities individually and was selected to design CRMWA’s first groundwater well field in 1996.
Seemingly clairvoyant in the board’s decision to construct the well field, a record drought followed the completion of the first phase in 2001. Lake Meredith was rendered unusable after dropping to a record low level of 28.94 feet., so this well field soon became the only source of deliverable water. Augmentation of the well field with the construction of Phase 2 and Phase 3A/B high capacity wells, completed in 2010, yielded a total of 45 wells capable of producing 58 million gallons of water per day.
In 2014 Parkhill was selected to prepare a route study, CRMWA Study Phase II. This project will procure easements necessary for a future large-diameter pipeline to bring water from JC Williams Well Field to the Amarillo Regulating Reservoir. These projects are some of the region’s historically significant infrastructure projects.
The City of El Paso selected Parkhill and Schrickel-Rollins (before the 2018 merger) as a member of the multi-discipline design team to master plan and design the expansive Westside Community Park and Don Haskins Recreation Center. The site began as a Corps of Engineers regional detention pond. The team coordinated with the Albuquerque District Corps of Engineers about flood control issues in the Mulberry Dam drainage basin.
The multiple-award-winning park and recreation center project incorporates hike and bike trails throughout the entire site. The park utilizes the once derelict land for recreational purposes with sports fields, picnic stations, restrooms, and playground and shade pavilions. The recreation center — located in a safe zone above the flood plain — houses two gymnasiums, a lounge area, a game room, exercise/weight room, commercial kitchen, staff office, central control desk, equipment storage and support spaces.
This engaging collaboration was a highly-fluid design process that involved nearly every all of the firm’s disciplines, including architecture, civil engineering, landscape architecture, interior design, MEP engineering, structural engineering and cost-estimating. Also, it involved key personnel in eight sectors, including Community, Higher Ed, Infrastructure, K-12, MEP/S, Site Development & Planning, Transportation and Treatment Sectors.
“Texas public schools experience an increase of approximately 70,000 new students each year,” said Texas Legislature spokesperson, DeEtta Culbertson, in 2019. West Texas plays a huge part in that growth as businesses continue to grow in the area, leading to an increased need for everything from teachers to facilities. “In West Texas, the growth is so phenomenal,” said Jim Nelson, former interim Superintendent for Ector County ISD.
With the extraordinary growth in the energy sector and a historic increase in population, West Texas school districts have needed a reliable architectural and engineering partner in the West Texas community that can balance high-quality education with facility needs.
Parkhill has teamed with multiple West Texas school districts to provide architectural services to meet these growing K-12 needs in the communities. The firm has provided a variety of services, including master planning, opinions of probable costs, design options, bidding, code and TDLR compliance, construction administration, interacting with code officials and fire marshals, bonds, and more to plan for expansion and regulatory compliance.
Since bond elections are critical to growth, Parkhill has assisted several districts with developing scopes of works for their bond proposals based on input from the community. Parkhill even meets with the public to communicate and educate the community about the bond projects before the election. Each of these clients has trusted Parkhill for many years, and the firm continuously looks for better and more creative solutions to solve the community’s needs.
In January 1982, Parkhill teamed with HDR to provide design services to the Lubbock District of TxDOT for I-27 through the City of Lubbock from South Loop 289 to North Loop 289. For TxDOT, this was one of the first significant projects to be designed by outside consultants and likely the first consultant project for the Lubbock District.
While HDR was the prime firm, Parkhill had the lead role for right-of-way (ROW) surveying, utility relocation coordination, and drainage design. The project covered seven miles of a six-lane divided highway with two-lane frontage roads on both sides. The design phase took about six years to complete. The design team delivered 6 PS&E (plans, specs, and estimate) packages that TxDOT constructed over 10 years. After his hire in January 1982, this project occupied the first five years of Butch Davis’ 38-year career with Parkhill.
In 2002, Schrickel-Rollins teamed with Graham Associates to provide schematics and PS&Es to upgrade Interstate 30 through Arlington, Texas. They were selected as the team to provide schematics and PS&Es to upgrade Interstate 30 through Arlington, Texas, drastically. The Three Bridges project extended from Cooper Street to Ballpark Way, a 3-mile stretch. The project improved the traffic flow along the IH-30 corridor and created more convenient access to AT&T Stadium, Globe Life Park, and the other destinations in the Arlington Entertainment District. Creative landscaping created a sense of place with enhanced bridges, enhanced retaining walls featuring eight murals depicting the history of Arlington with decorative intersection paving. The project was a huge success and was designed and constructed on-time while managing traffic for both a Super Bowl and an NBA All-Star Game during those four years of construction.
Improvements to Milwaukee Avenue illustrate other notable projects in Parkhill’s history with TxDOT. The southward extension from 34th Street to 92nd Street began in 2004 and took two years to complete. This 3.7-mile extension paved the way for residential and commercial growth in Southwest Lubbock. A northward 2-mile extension from 34th Street to 4th Street was completed in 2001 and provided for additional residential and business growth in northwest Lubbock.
Parkhill also completed the design of other TxDOT Lubbock District projects such as 82nd Street between Frankford Avenue and US 62/82, Texas Tech Parkway between 19th Street and Erskine Avenue, and the widening of Frankford Avenue between 4th Street and US 84. PSC’s first TxDOT design project outside the Lubbock District was for the Amarillo District. Parkhill prepared PS&E for an interchange located west of Adrian, Texas, on I-40.
Aviation services were part of the Transportation Sector until October 2018. The number of engineers with aviation expertise and amounts of revenue growing at a sustainable rate justified these services to become an individual sector. These changes encouraged more specialized mentorship within sectors and better quality service to aviation clients as well as transportation clients.
It’s only fitting that after before talking about Marlin Rocelius “Red” Smith counting down to Parkhill’s 30th moment, that the firm recognizes the city where he was a trusted advisor for more than 20 years. Parkhill and the City of Brownfield go back to the 1950s as the young company began working with the city to design and develop several projects, including water lines, sanitary sewer improvements, subdivisions, and even the city’s electrical power plant. Red Smith and Parkhill became a part of the Brownfield community and helped with a paving assessment program to help share the costs between the city and residents to pave the residential streets.
The development of the South Water Well Supply Field provided water in the mid-1950s and continued over the next 40 years. Parkhill also designed the water improvements necessary to receive and store CRMWA water once the pipeline was installed in the 1960s. The firm then engineered one of the first stormwater detention basins in Brownfield in 1969 by laying out two softball fields in the basin that could also be used for recreational games when the rainwater drained out.
Red Smith was such a trusted advisor that the city invited him to attend the annual city council planning retreat for more than 20 years. He was Building Community in Brownfield before many knew the importance and significance the phrase would embody at Parkhill. The enduring relationship between the city and Parkhill continued after Red with John Kelley in the late 1970s and Robert H. “Holly” Holder in 1992 as Trusted Advisors. In 2001, after the total loss of the intermediate school in a fire devastated Brownfield ISD, the community again turned to Parkhill.
With the strong reputation earned through its city projects and school projects in Lamesa and Lubbock-Cooper, PSC began its relationship with Brownfield ISD using informed insight to pass a bond to expand Oak Grove Elementary in 2002. Parkhill’s innovative work and inspired contribution with the district and city continues 20 years later. The school district passed a successful bond in May 2019 and broke ground in January 2020 on a new high school. The city’s new Sports Complex with six new baseball/softball fields designed by Parkhill opened this year. The firm has now worked on every BISD campus and every athletic facility.
This contagious passion for building community in Brownfield over the last 70 years has included work with the town’s water, wastewater, electric plant, city streets, parks, a new fire and police Station, the Brownfield Family Aquatic Center and the Municipal Solid Waste Landfill.
Marlin Rocelius “Red” Smith, Jr., graduated from Texas A&M College in 1924, receiving a Bachelor of Science degree in Civil Engineering. He served in various engineering roles, including being a rodman for the Engineering Department of Coleman County, Texas, during the summers while a student at A&M. In July 1926, he was appointed City Engineer of Lubbock until 1942 and then as City Manager until December 1945, at which time Parkhill was organized. He was an active member of the firm since that time with the exception of the year 1948 when he filled a request from the City of Lubbock to serve again as City Manager.
University Medical Center (UMC) serves as the academic teaching hospital for the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center and provides high-demand healthcare while supporting healthcare education in West Texas. Parkhill’s relationship with UMC began in the early 2000s with a facilities master plan that would help UMC meet regional needs for additional services. Upon approving the plans, UMC again partnered with Parkhill to realize its implementation.
UMC added two floors to the facility, which Parkhill built on top of the occupied, operating hospital without major disruptions to patient care. Parkhill also completed an expansion to the Southwest Cancer Center, reinventing cancer care by allowing UMC to expand their services and focus, and the University Medical Center Children’s Institute. In 2012 UMC and Parkhill completed the East Tower expansion, giving UMC a prominent four-story facility. The firm also completed the third floor in 2015, adding universal care beds to support growth, and the fourth floor in 2019 which added a state-of-the-art operating room system.
This enduring relationship has helped UMC meet the growing demand for medical education in West Texas as well. The facilities provide superior patient care as well as spaces for education and engaging collaboration. Parkhill also finished UMC’s business center, which consolidates the health system’s business support departments and IT infrastructure in one location, improving connectivity and adding a 3,000-square-feet data center to support UMC in its mission of “providing safe, high-quality care to all.”
Steeped in storied history, this boomtown began with the discovery of oil in the region. Texas Rangers had to be summoned twice to restore order during the infancy of this Texas panhandle city. The first to develop a drilling method that greatly improved the construction of oil wells, this technology was adapted for use in water wells and is still widely used. Borger was instrumental in the creation of Canadian River Municipal Water Authority. A. A. Meredith resigned as Borger City Manager in 1952 to promote the creation of this major, regional water supplier.
The enduring relationship with the Borger community also includes Borger ISD, which has worked with Parkhill for nearly two decades. It began with the passage of the first school bond in 58 years and encompasses 17 separate K-12 projects. Key projects include Gateway & Crockett Elementary Schools, the first LEED® Certified School west of the I-35 corridor, and the recently completed Bulldog Stadium improvements.
Parkhill’s first project with the City of Borger, over 25 years ago, was a lead abatement and repainting project for a one million gallon elevated water storage tank. That relationship has developed so intently that all but one of PSC’s sectors have provided services to Borger. The Borger Northwest Well Field won a Gold Medal in Engineering Excellence from ACEC Texas and received ACEC National Recognition in Washington D.C. This historically significant project was Borger’s largest infrastructure project.
Exceptional client, exceptional services, exceptional success — for Borger and Parkhill. The Borger community truly embodies the Parkhill mission statement of Building Community by creating inventive, relevant built environments together.
The first Parkhill Leadership Academy class was 2010-11 and included principals, associates and team leaders. Leadership Academy was created with the purpose of exposing existing and emerging professionals to business leadership and management concepts that are best suited for Parkhill’s success and consistent with the culture Parkhill strives to develop.
At the time, Parkhill had reorganized into sectors to better utilize the firm’s overall expertise rather than the specialties of exclusive offices, so Leadership Academy also had the intent of equipping leadership across office locations. The program is a concentrated curriculum and forum that requires interactive participation, advanced preparation and the completion of a class project. To date, there have been 132 graduates. The current class has 14 participants who will graduate in 2021.
Albuquerque-based Gordon Environmental Inc. (GEI) merged with Parkhill in 2016. The addition of GEI’s impressive portfolio of work and outstanding reputation gives Parkhill’s New Mexico presence a considerable boost. GEI adds their highly respected and sought-after solid waste engineering expertise to the firm’s strong solid waste program as well as a broad base of private, municipal and other governmental clients. Parkhill’s growing presence in New Mexico prompted the move with this well-known and innovative solid waste engineering firm. The addition of GEI with Parkhill’s MSW expertise results in one of the premier solid waste engineering firms in the southwest.
Lubbock ISD and Parkhill have worked together for the last 75 years. This includes minor paving projects, all of Lubbock ISD’s water wells for irrigation systems, and projects completed by Atcheson, Cartwright and Associates prior to the company merging with Parkhill in 1975. Notable projects include Monterey High School (1955) and Honey Elementary School (1983).
Lubbock ISD has teamed with Parkhill on several school bond projects over the years and including the last two bond programs in 2010 and 2018. Parkhill has designed several Lubbock ISD facilities including the newest elementary school in North Lubbock that will begin construction this month. Other recent projects include PlainsCapital Park at Lowrey Field, Jayne Anne Miller Elementary School, and two prototype elementary schools: Roy E. Roberts Elementary and Centennial Elementary.
For 75 years, Parkhill’s primary focus has been and continues to be, to develop long-term working relationships with its clients. Parkhill’s experience in Environmental Engineering Services includes all disciplines required to fully support both municipal and private solid waste engineers and geoscientists. The philosophy is to partner the firm’s innovative, comprehensive, multidiscipline practice and dedicated team members with our clients’ solid waste management team for the purpose of helping them identify and address their current and future development needs.
Parkhill’s long history in permitting solid waste facilities dates back to the mid-1970s. All that dramatically changed when the EPA promulgated Subtitle D in 1993. This change required a dramatic shift and more extensive engineering. Since that time, Parkhill has developed and devoted an entire team to municipal solid waste engineering, planning and permitting that serves all of its clients. The firm’s Environmental Sector has developed a strong working relationship with the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality management, New Mexico Environmental Department (NMED) and staff engineers.
Parkhill, Smith & Cooper has come a long way from using traditional surveying equipment like this transit that co-founder Gordon Parkhill is shown operating in the firm’s early years.
The principles of land surveying have not changed over the years, but technology certainly has. Projects that would have taken a three-man crew over a week to perform can in some cases be completed by one technician. Before GPS, scanners, drones or electronic distance measurement, surveyors relied on optical instruments. In the 1940s, surveyors would have used theodolites, transits compasses and steel chains or tapes to measure and lay out tracts of land. Contour maps were created with dumpy levels or plane tables.
Parkhill has come a long way since implementing survey services in January 2015. Surveying is reality capture, and drones are bringing a new era into surveying. Terrestrial laser scanning is another technology that is quickly changing the way field data is collected and analyzed. Laser scanners can create very accurate point cloud models of complex sites. The innovative 3D scan survey of the Texas School for the Deaf (TSD) – one of the largest 3D scans completed in Texas – resulted in 3.76 billion points of information collected across the more than 60-acre campus. ACEC Texas chose Parkhill’s 3D scan survey of the Texas School for the Deaf campus as the gold medal recipient for the 2017 Engineering Excellence Awards in the surveying and mapping category.
Established in 2015, Parkhill’s Austin office got off to a quick start when clients like Austin ISD, the City of Cedar Park and the Texas Facilities Commission contracted PSC to provide a range of architecture, mechanical, electrical and civil engineering services for their projects. The office maintains its strong ties to K-12 and Higher Education design, but it houses a diverse group of professionals in Education, Community, Aviation and Healthcare. The Austin office demonstrates the value of PSC’s multidisciplinary approach for clients across Texas and New Mexico.
Joseph R. “Joe” Rapier joined PSC in 1991 as a project structural engineer after 10 years as a consulting engineer. In 2006, Joe became the firm’s fourth president, succeeding Clayton Yeager.
Parkhill would double in employee size (200 to 400) and in office locations (5 to 10) over the next 13 years under Rapier. The firm also embarked on establishing its current mission and values as well as strategic initiatives that included the Parkhill Leadership Academy for the development of emerging professionals and the Building Community Investment which has given back nearly $1.6 million to local communities.
“Building Community is making an impact on people’s daily lives through our professional efforts in the built environment and the personal commitment of Parkhill to improve our profession and our communities with our time, talent and treasure,” Rapier said.
He currently serves as the firm’s Director of Innovation and is the President of the Lubbock Reese Redevelopment Authority. Joe is the Immediate Past President of the Texas Society of Professional Engineers.
The T-Bar Well Field and Pipeline Project was once described by former City of Midland Mayor, Wes Perry, as “the biggest project the city of Midland has ever accomplished … and will provide a water supply for at least the next 40 years.”
This massive project was completed in 2013 and included 45 production wells, 67 miles of 58-inch pipeline, and 20 miles of 8-to-36-inch collection lines to provide Midland with water for many years. The project garnered national recognition, including Engineering News Record’s 2013 Best Projects in Texas & Louisiana Award of Merit, the Design-Build Institute of America’s Award of Merit, and Tnemec’s 2014 Tank of the Year.
Parkhill has been working with the Department of Defense Education Activity consistently for the past 20 years and has been responsible for the design of multiple 21st Century schools in five countries. This experience has given Parkhill the expertise to establish the congressional budget/scope setting for multiple DoDEA school facilities worldwide.
Parkhill started working with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers continuously in the late 1980s. From 1999 to 2009, Parkhill worked with DoDEA on school re-roof projects, ceiling and HVAC replacements, asbestos building material removals, network cabling designs and minor additions.
In fall 2010, DoDEA convened a team of educators, architects, and even creative teams from Nike and Google to re-imagine designs for schools of the future. Parkhill had an active role with this group, and the result was new Educational Facility Design specifications that implement 21st-Century Learning concepts. The implementation of these design concepts is currently ongoing at multiple DoDEA campuses as well as K-12 school districts Parkhill serves throughout Texas and New Mexico.
Recent projects including the award-winning Wiesbaden High School and Wiesbaden Elementary/Middle School in Germany and the award-winning Fort Benning McBride Elementary School in Georgia. PSC continues to lead innovative thinking on K-12 facility design that incorporates numerous educational experiences learned with DoDEA.
Colleges and universities are among the most fascinating environments in which design professionals work, as every institution has its own particular goals and challenges, programmatic needs, myriad issues ranging from student success to utilities, and each its own identity. Having a passionate, experienced team devoted to creating learning environments and student experiences that are both engaging and empowering is paramount.
Parkhill’s Higher Education – or HEd – design professionals bring specialized knowledge, planning, and design expertise to HEd college and university clients. The HEd Team lives out the firm-wide mission of Building Community by creating inventive, relevant built environments in collaboration with the institutions that we are privileged to serve.
Highlighted HEd projects include TTU Jerry S. Rawls College of Business Administration, Howard College San Angelo Campus Expansion, Abilene Christian University Money Student Recreation and Wellness Center, El Paso Community College Culinary Arts Program Spaces, El Paso Community College Rio Grande Class, Lab and Garage, Midland College Dollye Neal Garden Chapel, Texas State Technical College Abilene Industrial Tech Center.
Parkhill’s mission statement of Building Community reaches far beyond the vast amount of architecture and engineering projects. More than 400 employees use the company’s ventures and inspired contributions to transform the communities they work in and serve each and every day.
“With each project, we strive to build community with our clients, walking alongside them as we take up their mission and purpose,” said President and CEO Jay Edwards. “My hope is that we continue to move forward, going beyond the project by volunteering our time and resources to build every aspect of the communities we live in and serve.”
Since the program’s inception in 2015, Parkhill has donated more than $1.6 million to fund over 60 projects for community organizations around Lubbock, Abilene, Austin, Amarillo, El Paso, Frisco, Houston, Midland and New Mexico. Parkhill employees also volunteered close to 3,000 hours at local soup kitchens, canned food drives, and fundraisers to directly build community with the people in the organizations they help.
Following Parkhill completing a facilities and infrastructure assessment of the 533,000 GSF Texas School for the Deaf campus in Austin, the Texas Facilities Commission also selected Parkhill to complete a multi-phased master plan to accommodate the campus’ anticipated growth from 500 to 700 students over the next decade. An innovative 3D scan survey of the entire site resulted in 3.76 billion points of information collected across the more than 60-acre campus.
Parkhill also planned for flexibility in program and educational development through easily configurable spaces. To immerse themselves into the needs of the project and users, Parkhill engaged with TSD and attended the “Think Deaf Workshop” at Gallaudet University in Washington, D.C., to learn the spatial, interactive and pedagogical needs of deaf students.
The 3D Scan Survey project was one of the largest 3D scans completed in Texas and won awards at the ACEC (Austin TX) & ACEC (Washington DC) – earning Gold Medal Winner for Texas and a National Recognition Award.
The City of Lubbock and Parkhill have partnered since Parkhill’s founding for decades of projects, starting with the main pumping station for Lubbock’s water in the 1940s and later including airport projects, municipal streets, public libraries, police/fire stations, municipal solid waste, drainage, and other municipal facilities and infrastructure projects.
Recent projects include the Northwest Lubbock Drainage Improvements, the Lubbock 34th Street Improvements street reconstruction, and numerous award-winning projects for the City of Lubbock. The South Central Lubbock Drainage Improvements was a national finalist in the ACEC (Washington DC) Engineering Excellence Awards. The Lubbock Caliche Canyon Cell IV Closure – ENG won ACEC (Austin TX) Silver Medal.
The Lubbock Lake Alan Henry Water Supply Planning which consisted of approximately 20 miles of treated water line across elevation changes and eight major road crossings and the Lubbock Lake Alan Henry WTP Design South Water Treatment Plant, a new state-of-the-art water treatment plant, finished water storage and high service pumping station, also won ACEC (Austin TX) awards.
In the mid-1980s, Scharbauer Brothers & Company Inc. began the development of 20,000 acres of their real estate holdings in Midland County located between the Midland City Limits and the Midland International Airport. Parkhill began working for SBC in 1986 and completed a flexible Master Land-Use Plan reflecting the City of Midland’s growth patterns, needs, and existing infrastructure and transportation corridors.
Development over time has taken the form of over 30 specific development projects, which to date encompass almost 3,000 acres of land. This land development consists of the Scharbauer Sports Complex, which includes a minor league baseball park, a UIL standard football/soccer stadium, a shared plaza, a maintenance facility and a community center. Grande Communications Stadium is the 15,000-seat football & soccer stadium, and Security Bank Ballpark is the 5,000-seat professional AA baseball stadium and home of the Midland Rockhounds.
In 1958, Gordon Parkhill — one of Parkhill’s three founders — moved to El Paso to organize the firm’s second location at the Anson Mills Building in Downtown El Paso. Their current office is their fourth location, occupying the historic Firestone Tire Company building which the El Paso Electric Company converted into office space in the 1920s. Some of Parkhill’s first projects were with El Paso Water, and 60 years later, the office celebrates the many projects, lengthy relationships, and unique history the firm has built in El Paso.
Over the course of 75 years of continuous practice, Parkhill has grown to be a top 25-ranked K-12 design firm, nationally recognized for research, design, thought leadership and financial stewardship. From our West Texas roots, we have grown to serve public and private schools throughout Texas, across the nation, and overseas for the Department of Defense Education Activity.
Parkhill has helped more than 80 Texas school districts pass and deliver bond projects over the past 15 years, utilizing its Metrics Program to help maximize facility impact on learning and minimize facility cost-of-ownership. These projects have included the first LEED-certified school and first collaborative 21C school west of I-35 and the first school in the world to create an immersive experience that allows children to explore the history of the universe using computer vision and augmented reality.
Most importantly, Parkhill has had the privilege to work with educators to complement their talents and positively impact the lives of nearly one million students.
Texas Tech and Parkhill have a long-standing relationship that goes hand-in-hand together as both have grown over the last 75 years. One of Parkhill’s earliest engineering services for the university was the construction of Jones Stadium in 1946 and when the east side of the grandstands was moved back in order to enlarge the stadium and convert it into a bowl-like structure in 1959-1960.
This led to 80 more projects such as the TTU Master Plan, Library renovation, Southwest Collections Library, Rawls College of Business and addition, engineering for the United Supermarkets Arena and locker room renovations, College of Media and Communication renovation, John Walker Soccer Complex, Rawls Golf Course Clubhouse, BASF Seeds Innovation Center and the Synthetic Turf Intramural Fields.
James E. “Jimmy” Atcheson opened a one-man architecture firm in 1945, the same year Parkhill was established. He added Atmar Atkinson as a partner in 1950 and then Edward W. “Bill” Cartwright was named a partner in 1955. The firm became Atcheson, Atkinson, Cartwright and Rorex when the partners added Evelyn Rorex. Shortly after, Parkhill offered Bill and Jimmy a chance to join the firm, and in 1975 AACR split into two firms with Atcheson and Cartwright becoming a division of Parkhill.
Jimmy retired in 1978 and the firm still honored his name. Atcheson and Cartwright became AC Associates and absorbed into Parkhill’s name 7 years later. Signature projects include Monterey High School in Lubbock (1955), the Lubbock Federal Building in Lubbock (1971), Central Church of Christ in Amarillo (1981), and the Texas Tech Student Union Building (1951).
Fun Fact: AACR was one of the two biggest architecture firms in Lubbock. The other was called Brasher, Goyette and Rapier. The “Rapier” was the father of Joe Rapier, Parkhill’s fourth president.
Healthcare design has been a part of Parkhill since 1974. When Parkhill and Abilene-based Tittle Luther Partnership, LLP (TLP) merged in 2012, it gave Parkhill the resources to create a full, dedicated Healthcare Sector. Focusing on care environments allowed Parkhill to design solutions that support the patient. The Healthcare Sector will continue serving the key clients and look into ways to diversify and expand its services into new markets.
In 2012, Tittle Luther Partnership, established in 1957, merged with Parkhill and established the Abilene office. TLP’s legacy for providing architecture and interior design services has since expanded to include civil, structural, electrical, and mechanical engineering as well as landscape architecture, sustainability, and ADA accessibility specialists since the merger. Our Abilene office currently resides in a three-story, historic house near the heart of downtown Abilene.
Herbert Bennett Reaves graduated from Big Spring High School in 1941 and worked summers in the maintenance crew at Cosden Refinery while attending Texas Tech. Reaves received his basic training in what was then called the Armored Force and was sent to engineering studies under the Army training program. In 1945 he was employed as a draftsman by the city engineer’s office in Big Spring. He received his Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering in 1948 while working as a part-time draftsman at Parkhill. He became a Resident Engineer in 1949 and Office Engineer in 1950. Reaves was promoted to Associate in 1955 before taking over as President in 1971.
The Buddy Holly Hall of Performing Arts and Sciences will be a landmark cultural destination and will be the cultural hub of Lubbock and the cornerstone of downtown revitalization, in addition to fueling the economy for years to come. The hall will be the future home of Ballet Lubbock, Lubbock Symphony Orchestra and Lubbock ISD Visual and Performing Arts. Buddy Holly Hall is a unique model not found anywhere else in the world. The state-of-the-art campus features two theaters, event space, a full-service bistro and a ballet academy under one roof.
The multi-functional facilities’ true innovation lies in its ability to be augmented for Broadway performances, orchestra, ballet, choral, conventions, touring musical performances and many other purposes. Parkhill is the Architect of Record and is working with 16 consultants on this 220,000 square-foot, $154 million project, lending its long-cultivated familiarity with the chosen contractor, local codes, local construction practices, and skills at coordinating and communicating with multiple consultants. Parkhill teamed with other firms to provide architectural, mechanical, electrical, and structural engineering services, while also providing site/civil services, landscape architecture and interior design services.
Parkhill’s founders incorporated the business on Sept. 18, 1963, naming Gordon Parkhill the firm’s first President. Key completed projects at this time included the Lubbock County Buffalo Springs Reservoir Dam & Access Road, Odessa Elevated Storage Reservoir and Water Treatment Plant and utilities for housing units at Fort Bliss. Parkhill began work that same year on the El Paso Water Haskell Street Water Treatment Plant — one of the pioneer re-use projects in the nation.
Covenant Health serves 62 West Texas counties and 1.2 million people and is the largest health system in West Texas. Parkhill has partnered with Covenant since 1974, when it was still called Methodist Hospital, and became the lead designer for several Methodist projects in West Texas. When Methodist Hospital merged with St. Mary of the Plains in 1998, it expanded both facilities’ services to support the growth in the community.
“We felt like if we could merge those two hospitals, then we could provide state-of-the-art healthcare right here and keep people from having to go to Dallas or Houston or Phoenix or wherever they might choose to go,” said Danny Johnston, former Methodist board member.
Covenant and Parkhill have continued to build a strong working relationship by expanding services and addressing the growing need for healthcare and technological resources in the region through numerous projects. The two partnered in designing one of the first hybrid operating room spaces in the region, which introduced new technologies and ways of approaching surgery to support patient care. Currently, Parkhill is collaborating with Covenant and other design firms to bring a medically anchored mixed-use development to West Texas– the first of its kind in the region and among the first in the state.
The area in Midland currently home to Midland International Air & Space Port has had many names including Sloan Field until 1939 & Midland Army Air Field during WWII. The airport is also home to the Pliska Plane, the first airplane flown in Texas in 1911. This important element of Midland’s aviation history was incorporated into the new terminal which was completed in January 1999. Parkhill has developed a long-term, trusted-advisor relationship with Midland International Air & Space Port through numerous projects over the years including the master plan for the Spaceport Business Park prepared for the airport and the Midland Development Corporation.
Gordon Wight Parkhill’s passion for the engineering world began in 1919, when he was a rodman-chainman for H.N. Roberts, Consulting Engineer, at Longview. His career took off after graduating from A&M College of Texas in 1924, including 10 years on the Civil Engineering Staff at Texas Technological College while maintaining his consulting practice during the summers. He taught as Associate Professor until he joined the firm of Haynes & Strange, Parkhill, Voelcker & Dixon, Architects – Engineers. He helped develop airfields during WWII, resigning from the firm to enter military service as an officer and helping to create Parkhill after the war ended. He was named the firm’s first president in 1963.
Gordon W. Parkhill, Marlin R. Smith and Clarence Cooper formed a partnership after World War II and established a civil engineering firm in Lubbock, Texas in 1945. Parkhill and Smith graduated from Texas A&M University together in 1924. Parkhill then met Cooper while working together at another firm before the three partnered together to create Parkhill, Smith & Cooper- Consulting Engineers. The three promptly went to work and helped surrounding communities meet the demands of rapid development, which occurred after the war. Core services in municipal infrastructure became a mainstay of the firm.
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