“We never wanted to be the biggest, we just wanted to be
Those words from two of BG&E’s founders, Peter Bruechle and Ernie Evans, echo across the business today.
In 1970, three enterprising engineers, Peter Bruechle, Norm Gilchrist and Ernie Evans, established the engineering consultancy, Bruechle Gilchrist and Evans Pty Ltd in Perth, Western Australia (WA).
Over the years, the name morphed into BG&E and the business grew into three continents, with 12 offices and employing more than 730 talented people.
Since inception, we were determined to be pioneers and best-in-class, utilising our technical expertise to solve complex engineering problems. In 1984, we were the first consultancy to introduce the concept of incrementally launched bridges, with the delivery of the Tonkin Bridge in Perth – part of an 81-kilometre corridor linking the airport with the city’s north-eastern and south-eastern suburbs.
Our reputation for designing tall towers began in 1988, with the award-winning 51-storey Central Park Tower in Perth. At the time, it was Australia’s tallest building, standing at 226 metres.
BG&E’s first 30 years in WA were richly rewarding as our work broadened beyond bridges and buildings, to deliver Perth’s wastewater treatment system and the 450-metre Roe Street Railway Tunnel, among others.
In 1989, we ventured to the east coast, establishing an office in Sydney, followed by Melbourne in 2007 and Brisbane in 2010, having built a workforce of 190 people. We subsequently opened offices in Newcastle in 2012, Townsville in 2020, and the Gold Coast and Sunshine Coast, in 2021.
Growth was not limited to Australia, with the opening of Dubai in 2003, followed by Abu Dhabi in 2008 and Doha in 2013. The early years in the Middle East cemented our position as market-leaders in tall buildings – with our forward-thinking structural engineers delivering more than 40 marquee commercial, mixed-use and residential developments – including Emirates Tower, The Index, JW Marriott Marquis Hotel, Binary and Vision Towers, Marine Promenade, Jumeriah Beach and Burj Residences, and the spectacular One Za’abeel and The Opus in Dubai, as well as Addax Tower and the International Renewable Energy Agency Headquarters in Abu Dhabi, and the W Hotel in Doha.
The Council of Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat recognised our innovative designs and nominated BG&E as one of the top 10 structural engineering firms in the world.
While we were securing work in the Middle East, projects continued apace in Australia. Signature projects included the Fiona Stanley Hospital (biggest social infrastructure project in WA’s history), the Karuah Bridge (longest incrementally launched bridge in Australia) and the Woolgoolga-to-Ballina Pacific Highway Upgrade in New South Wales, and the Royal Children’s Hospital in Melbourne, to name a few.
We launched in London in 2016, Singapore in 2018, and in 2019, we crossed the Tasman Sea to establish an office in Auckland.
In 2021, our imaginative teams in Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, the United Kingdom and Middle East, design and deliver engineering solutions for clients in the Property, Transport, Ports and Marine, Water and Resources sectors.
Our technical services encompass structural and civil engineering, façade design and engineering, construction engineering (including permanent and temporary works), materials durability and testing, hydrology and water engineering, and digital engineering.
As BG&E continues to evolve – the Board and Executive Leadership Team are steadfast in their commitment to remain employee-owned – as the model fuels our ambition and is woven into the fabric of our culture and our strategy.