Collaborative. Specialized. Global.
Our philosophy draws on over 100 years of dedication to the engineering discipline. Sought out by industry-leading architects, owners, developers, and contractors, we deliver reliable, highly functional, ground-breaking designs that stand the test of time.
Driven by a “better together” mindset, we prioritize collaboration as a key tool to spark innovation and cultivate creativity. We reflect this not only in our client relationships, but with a flat organizational structure—our most experienced, senior-level staff are engaged on every project and work elbow-to-elbow with technical specialists, design engineers, and modeling experts.
We operate as one team and one office. The impact on our clients? Every project benefits from our collective idea sharing, experience, and lessons learned.
Our firm offers traditional structural and civil engineering services for buildings of all shapes, sizes, and complexities, as well as site designs for architectural and landscape projects ranging from small urban infill sites to campuses over 1,000 acres. Partnered with our engineers, MKA’s robust and skilled team of building and site modelers contribute cutting-edge, detailed models in Revit, AutoCAD, Infraworks, Civil 3D, Rhino, Navisworks, and Dynamo, among others, to support our projects.
With a portfolio reflecting every major market sector, we are ready to contribute inspired design solutions to the most unique and challenging projects worldwide.
- Seismic, Wind, Vibration
- Adaptive Reuse, Existing Building Renovation, and Retrofits
- Performance-Based Design
- Sustainable Design
- Site Civil Engineering
- Strategic Infrastructure Planning
- Sustainable Water Management
- Resilience-Based Design
The MKA Story: 100+ years of engineering vision, dedication, and creativity.
The W. H. Witt Company was founded in 1920 by William Henry Witt in Seattle, Washington, as a one-person company with dreams of making his mark on the city. From these humble beginnings, we have evolved into the global, award-winning firm we are today—growing in name and number to hundreds of employees and a portfolio of thousands of innovative, iconic, and world-class projects.
While our leadership and name have changed eight times over the last century, our commitment to delivering client satisfaction and design solutions for the best buildings and sites in the world has never wavered.
We do what’s never been done before.
Inherent to our story, success, and growth is a drive to improve. This theme of innovation has resulted in a legacy of “firsts” that have not only earned MKA a reputation as leaders in the engineering field, but have propelled our industry forward. We are engineering pioneers always striving for the next frontier.
Pierce County, WA, 1934
At 170 ft long, bridge utilized the longest beam span or concrete truss ever built in the U.S. at time of completion
Yakima Valley High School
First prestressed thin-shell concrete structure in the U.S.
United Steelworkers Building
Pittsburgh, PA, 1963
First exterior space frame building and first building to use 100 ksi quenched and tempered high-strength steel, originally known as the IBM Building
International Exhibition Facility
New Orleans, LA, 1969
Largest-span cylindrical concrete shell roof in the world, with a 253-ft clear span, also known as The Rivergate
New York World Trade Center
New York, NY, 1972
First use of prefabricated multiple-column-and-spandrel steel wall panels in buildings; First buildings with mechanical damping units to reduce wind excitation; First comprehensive wind environmental study, boundary layer wind tunnel study, and human sensitivity to building motion study for a high-rise building; Tallest building in the world at time of completion
Federal Reserve Bank
Minneapolis, MN, 1973
First catenary-supported, clear-span building
“Kingdome” King County Stadium
Seattle, WA, 1976
Largest concrete dome in the world, with a 661-ft-4-in clear span
San Francisco, CA, 1990
First use of steel plate shear walls in a high-rise building
U.S. Bank Centre
Seattle, WA, 1990
World's first use of super-high-strength cast-in-place concrete
Hawaii Convention Center
Honolulu, HI, 1997
First full-building-depth “super truss” structural system
Seattle, WA, 1999
First application of high-capacity viscous dampers to control lateral seismic forces in a long-span roof structure; First fully retractable stadium roof structure with linear tracking and independent roof panels
Experience Music Project
Seattle, WA, 2000
Most advanced application ever of computer technology to building design and construction; First building with no axes of symmetry; First use of steel-stiffened concrete shell, combining steel ribs, composite concrete shell, and pedestal support system
Highcliff & Hang Lung Towers
Hong Kong, 2002
First use of rooftop “tuned” liquid sloshing dampers to control wind acceleration
111 South Wacker
Chicago, IL, 2005
First elliptical-shaped cable net wall ever constructed
Seattle Green Roof Evaluation Project
Seattle, WA, 2007
Unprecedented three-year research collaboration with private-sector developers proving stormwater benefits of green roofs (e.g., 92% mitigation of cumulative rainfall and 79% reduction in runoff intensity) to promote industry-wide adoption of green roofs
Olympic Sculpture Park
Seattle, WA, 2007
First engineered beach on a major U.S. metropolitan waterfront; The first-ever decoupled retaining wall design allowing for complete flexibility on wall angles and heights and minimized disturbance of contaminated soils; First-ever private sector storm drainage separation project where Seattle Art Museum voluntarily built a public-works-style rainwater-only pipeline
One Rincon Hill
San Francisco, CA, 2008
First-ever use in the U.S. of tuned liquid “sloshing“ dampers to minimize building wind accelerations and increase occupant comfort
Dee and Charles Wyly Theatre
Dallas, TX, 2009
First-ever retractable balconies for theater design with seating towers that can move up, down, in, and out to create an array of performance configurations
San Ysidro U.S. Land Port of Entry
San Ysidro, CA, 2014
First Net Zero Water system for a round-the-clock General Services Administration facility and the largest scale U.S. application of its type, resulting in 93% reduction in municipal water use and eliminating the need to purchase potable water for non-potable needs
Elliott Bay Central Seawall
Seattle, WA, 2016
First-of-its-kind, custom-designed Light-Penetrating Surface sidewalk promenade comprised of precast concrete and specifically shaped/oriented/positioned glass pavers providing optimal natural light into a waterfront salmon corridor
150 North Riverside
Chicago, IL, 2017
Largest rolled steel section in the world (W36x925); First use of 70-ksi steel in the U.S.
Seattle, WA, 2020
First application of SpeedCore in a high-rise structure
“I walked through the doors and met a group of incredibly bright, experienced people who thrived on doing new things, working hard, and getting the job done right … As a young engineer, I realized that I was watching history being made.”
“We had to be dreamers. There was no one to tell us what to do, so we had to work out answers for ourselves...”
“Innovative engineering is the underpinning of Seattle’s safe, creative, cutting-edge designs and allows us to build great public buildings, civic gathering places and engaging landscapes...”
Committed to Community
We aspire to impact not just the built environment, but the people and communities who live, work, learn, and play in the spaces we bring to life. From senior leadership and department heads, to new hires and interns, our whole team gets involved and works to make a difference with real boots-on-the-ground effort. Examples of our community service include:
- Founding and participating in the Washington chapter of the ACE (Architecture/Construction/ Engineering) student mentoring program
- Volunteer lecturing for University of Washington graduate-level structural engineering classes
- Donations and employee involvement in community events such as Food Lifeline’s “Food Frenzy”
- Participating in local science fairs
- Supporting national and regional United Way chapters
- Sponsoring an annual MKA Community Service Project