When RVi’s Director of Florida Operations Ryan Seacrist, PLA, heard in early September that the company was merging with a major competitor in the state, his first thought was to strap in for liftoff.
In just five short months, RVi went from making its Florida market entry via Orlando to pushing its growth plan for the Sunshine State into overdrive – with a total of five new offices in Florida and one in North Carolina to be integrated by the end of this year.
“It was exciting to think about what we’ve been planning for the next 10 years in terms of RVi’s growth in Florida could arrive so quickly,” Seacrist said. “Most firms don’t get this opportunity, even through a merger, to add six offices of talented staff and client relationships in five new geographic markets, basically overnight.”
Atwell Group, a national consulting, design, engineering and construction services firm comprised of a family of brands that includes RVi Planning + Landscape Architecture, announced on Sept. 2 that it had completed a merger of Waldrop Engineering.
Founded in 2000 and based in Bonita Springs, with offices in Fort Myers, Sarasota, Tampa and Orlando, Waldrop provides planning, landscape architecture and civil engineering design and entitlement services across Florida and the Southeast. The firm also recently opened a new office in Asheville, N.C.
More than 40 landscape architects and planners in Waldrop’s six offices will join RVi, and by Jan. 1, 2022 begin operating under the RVi banner.
With a current staff size of 60 across RVi’s offices in Texas, Arizona, Georgia and Florida, the company will now total more than 100 employees after including Waldrop’s staff across Florida, placing RVi squarely among the largest planning and landscape architecture firms in the country.
“When we saw the deal was gaining traction, a couple of factors built the excitement among our staff,” said Ryan Binkowski, PLA, Senior V.P. and COO at Waldrop.
“RVi is a highly respected name, and the group’s status as a national brand is very exciting for us. We have recently been increasing our national presence beyond Florida, but this will be a welcomed opportunity, both for our staff and for supporting RVi and its growing reach. Our team has evolved as an integrated practice, yet encompasses the great talent and culture of an independent planning and landscape architecture firm. Our entire team is very enthusiastic about the announcement, and I look forward to working with everyone on the transition.”
Waldrop brings a wealth of experience in Florida and the Southeast, serving developers of master-planned communities, resorts and hospitality developments, universities, and an array of commercial projects.
“We appreciate the incredible company, staff and client base that Waldrop has built over the past 21 years across its six offices, and look forward to incorporating their planners and landscape architects into the RVi family over the next few months,” said RVi President Chris Crawford.