It is often said that one of the best barometers for a country’s economic progress is the volume of construction and realty work. Certainly at the height of the financial crisis, many construction companies were left on their knees; however, the strong usually survive and few businesses come with stronger credentials, experience and reputation, than Nicholson Construction Company.
In December 2014, the company announced that Steven Scherer, former Senior Vice President of Hayward Baker, Inc., had been appointed as the new President of Nicholson Construction.
Scherer brings more than 35 years of civil and foundation engineering experience to his new position. That is more than matched by the pedigree of the business he joined, as the corporate website explains:
“Since 1955, Nicholson Construction Company has been setting the industry standard for performance and technical innovation in geotechnical construction. As the North American subsidiary of Soletanche Bachy, Nicholson is part of a global network of unparalleled geotechnical resources and expertise, specializing in deep foundations, earth retention, ground treatment and ground improvement.
“We have built our reputation by performing the highest quality work and providing the most innovative solutions on the widest range of demanding and high profile projects. With district offices around the country Nicholson has the capabilities and local expertise to address each region’s unique geotechnical construction needs.
“For over 50 years, Nicholson has pioneered U.S. geotechnical construction – developing and introducing new techniques and completing many technically challenging, high-profile projects.”
Commenting on his new position, Scherer acknowledged the rich history of the business, stating: “Nicholson will be celebrating its 60th anniversary this year, and I am very excited to become part of this company’s long history of success and innovation in the geotechnical construction industry.”
The Pittsburgh-based business was founded in the Steel City in 1955 by Arthur Nicholson and operated as a regional pile driving company before evolving into a full-service structural support geotechnical contractor in the late 1960s.
Along the way, the company built its reputation with a series of high profile projects and firsts, which included building the first permanent soil anchor walls in the US, for the Corps of Engineers in South have, Michigan. That same year the company constructed the first US permanent rock anchor wall for Amco Steel in Butler, Pennsylvania.
Other major projects included a Nicholson-led joint venture in 2001, which installed nearly 1,000 anchors to stabilize the World Trade Center bathtub and facilitate recovery efforts, the installation of 61-strand test anchors at Bluestone Dam in West Virginia and the construction of a diaphragm wall support of excavation system for the U.S. Capitol Visitor Center project in Washington, DC.
In 2005, Soletanche, Inc. merged into Nicholson to become the new North American business unit of the Soletanche Bachy Group and 4 years later, Nicholson Construction Company acquired the capital stock of Terra Drilling Company Inc., a geotechnical contractor.
Despite the challenges within the construction industry, Nicholson has been through a busy few years and heads into 2015 with plenty of work on its books.
Nicholson Construction’s Denver office endured a busy 2014 supporting the University of Colorado Boulder’s ongoing athletic complex expansion project.
The $156 million effort at the University includes the refurbishing of the Dal Ward Athletic Center, the addition of a new indoor practice facility and an addition to Folsom Field, which includes new seating areas.
Nicholson’s work includes a permanent earth retention system to complete the large excavation for the construction of the indoor practice football field and running track, as well as 2 levels of underground parking. The project also includes the construction of new football operations offices and a new weight room.
Nicholson will complete the project in February 2015 on the current construction schedule. The overall project is set to be completed in fall of 2015.
Meanwhile, the company is continuing the excavation, earthwork, and dewatering project for the Transbay Tower in the new Transbay Transit Center in San Francisco.
The Transbay Transit Center is a $4.5 billion project involving transportation and housing that creates a “Grand Central Station of the West.” This new hub will connect 8 Bay Area counties and the state of California through 11 different transit systems. Nicholson will be constructing foundation support for a bridge that will be a part of the bus ramp.
The overall project is set to be completed in 2017. As Nicholson Construction Company celebrates its 60th anniversary, it continues to operate at the forefront of construction expertise and looks set to do so for many years to come.