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Infrastructure: It’s More Exciting than You Might Think

What comes to mind first when you think about technology and innovation? It’s probably not infrastructure and engineering projects – right?

But perhaps it should be.

Charles L. “Chuck” Harrington recently wrote about this in an Op-Ed published in the Pasadena Star-News and San Gabriel Valley Tribune last week. In his piece, Harrington admits most people typically think about products delivered by tech giants such as Apple, Google, Microsoft, IBM and the like.

Certainly most people don’t think of infrastructure and engineering projects because “infrastructure is boring, at least to most people,” he writes, referencing a recent TechCrunch article declaring infrastructure “much too important to be allowed to be interesting.”

However, Harrington – who serves as Chairman, President and CEO of Parsons, a global engineering, construction, technical and management services firm with revenues of $3.2 billion in 2015 – argues: “in all seriousness, infrastructure is more exciting than you might think.”

The Parsons CEO points out that the transportation industry is expected to spend $24.9 billion in 2016 on Internet of Things hardware, software and connectivity, as reported by the International Data Corporation.

Indeed, we have already begun to see transportation infrastructure engineers start to develop concepts for Internet-connected roads and transportation systems that can accommodate connected cars.

This is a trend we expect to see accelerate in Phoenix – as we wrote in February “Phoenix Sees Its Future at Intersection of Tech & Transit” – and elsewhere around the globe.

In Phoenix, Parsons provided project management services as a consultant to a national development services firm during the construction of the $350 million Sheraton Phoenix Downtown Hotel. Parsons also provided project management services for the expanded multimodal Tempe Transportation Center.

Learn more about Parsons at