PITTSBURGH — Michael Baker Corporation acquired The LPA Group, Inc., a 475-person transportation consulting firm based in Columbia, S.C. LPA significantly expands Baker’s presence in the Southeastern United States transportation infrastructure market, and broadens its capabilities in the planning, design, program management, and construction management of projects in the aviation, highway, bridge, and rail and transit markets. The terms of the transaction were a total consideration of $59.4 million, of which $51.4 million was paid in cash and $8.0 million was paid in Baker common stock.

Founded in 1981, The LPA Group has more than 35 offices across the Southeastern and Mid-Atlantic regions of the United States, as well as Southern California. The company provides comprehensive engineering, architectural, planning, environmental, program management, design-build, and construction management and inspection services for the development of aviation and surface transportation projects. Its revenue in 2009 was approximately $93 million. The merger of Baker’s and LPA’s services expands the ability of both companies to compete for and execute larger and more complex transportation projects on a national scale, Baker said.

“[LPA’s] prominence in the Southeast, and particularly in the Carolinas, Georgia, and Florida, greatly expands Baker’s presence in that region of the country, which is a key objective of our growth strategy,” said Brad Mallory, president and CEO of Baker. He added that the merging of both firms’ aviation practices “puts us in the Top 10 providers of these engineering and architecture services. Furthermore, the combination of our highly regarded design-build capabilities enables us to provide this service to our transportation clients anywhere in the U.S.”