Louis Berger engineers take soil sample for Rangoon to Mandalay road project in Burma (Myanmar)

Following the end of World War II, troops returned home. Resources that had been allocated to the global war effort could be repurposed for physical infrastructure and economic development. War-torn nations in Europe and the Pacific began to rebuild and recover. The United States and Soviet Union began investing heavily in defense and logistics infrastructure that would fuel the new Cold War economy. The increased investment would drive a spike in demand for engineers as nations relied heavily on consultants to perform the design and engineering work associated with new highways, bridges, railways and maritime facilities.

Louis Berger was founded in 1953 by Dr. Louis Berger, a member of the engineering faculty at Pennsylvania State University and former U.S. Coast Guard commander. The firm began as a soils mechanics and foundations engineering operation with one office in Harrisburg, Pa.

Key milestones:

  • 1953: Louis Berger embarked on its first major assignment, preparing designs for an approximately 20-mile portion of the Northeast Extension of the Pennsylvania Turnpike, the United States’ first superhighway.
  • 1955: Louis Berger completed its first assignment for the New Jersey State Highway Department, the interchange at Amboy Avenue and U.S. Route 1 in Edison Township, N.J.
  • 1956: Louis Berger designed the 13.5-mile Interstate 80 between Denville and Netcong, N.J. It was the first interstate road to be designed and constructed in the state of New Jersey
  • 1958: Louis Berger initiated the design of a limited-access relocation of U.S. Route 1 around Bel Air, Md.
  • 1959: Louis Berger undertook its first international assignment, assisting in the rehabilitation of 700 kilometers of the Rangoon-Mandalay Road in Burma.