Following a career as a Division Traffic Engineer with the NC Department of Transportation, John Davenport fatefully took a private consulting position that ended on Friday, September 7, 2001. When the world stopped that following Tuesday, John says it was like playing a game of musical chairs and finding yourself without a seat.
In the months following the tragedy of 9/11, John took the time to consider the values and contributions he wanted to bring to his work and career. Although he had never before considered starting his own company, he knew it was time to take a risk. He established DAVENPORT Engineering in Winston-Salem in 2002 from a desk set up in the corner of his kitchen.
Today, DAVENPORT is a leading engineering, design, and consulting firm with offices throughout the Southeast. The firm primarily manages public and private projects relating to traffic, parking, pedestrians, and roadways.
John says that being headquartered in Winston-Salem has helped his business succeed.
“We are in a growing city where new entrepreneurs are not overlooked among the masses. It has been easy to build relationships here, in both the public and private sectors. Winston-Salem is small enough for business owners to make their mark while still offering all the benefits and opportunities of a large city.”
Although the company’s footprint has expanded, DAVENPORT still finds opportunities to engage with Winston-Salem and Forsyth County’s public and municipal projects as new developments get underway. The firm was kept busy with several projects to assist with changes in traffic patterns ahead of the renovation of Salem Parkway, which closed a mile-long section of Business 40 from late 2018 to early 2020.
From its central east-coast location in Winston-Salem, the firm also executes projects through regional offices in North Carolina, Virginia, and Florida and is licensed in North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia, Tennessee, Georgia, and Florida.
Ballpark Area Improvements – Winston-Salem
In addition to the development of BB&T Ballpark, now Truist Stadium, DAVENPORT has provided transportation planning and design efforts for multiple apartments and retail establishments in the vicinity. The firm has been a part of the project since its inception and continues to provide services to date.
Elizabeth River Tunnel – Norfolk, VA
The overall scope of this six-year undertaking included doubling the capacity of the Midtown Tunnel and rehabilitating the existing tunnels, thus improving safety and functionality. DAVENPORT’s role included the development of all traffic signs and pavement markings for this project. One of the goals of this rehabilitation was to make way-finding in the complex tunnel structure clearer and more informative.
Northwest Boulevard – Winston-Salem
This popular thoroughfare in Winston-Salem serves two local schools and a public park, making student and pedestrian safety a critical concern. Anticipating an increase in traffic due to the Business 40 closure, renovations were necessary to improve safety and traffic flow.
DAVENPORT proposed an innovative back-in angled parking feature, the first of its kind in Winston-Salem. The project was completed in time for the start of the school year, ahead of the closure of Business 40, and under budget.
Forsyth County Courthouse Parking Garage
DAVENPORT provided engineering and traffic design services for the new 650+ vehicle parking structure. The five-story structure, completed in June 2020, is bounded to the north by the existing Wells Fargo parking structure and was constructed to allow ingress and egress between both parking structures.
As DAVENPORT continues to grow, John says he is focused on cultivating the next generation of leadership talent to move his company forward. “In Winston-Salem, there is a strong talent pipeline generated by our colleges and universities. Graduates are prepared for a variety of careers from business development and marketing to design and engineering, which helps us to grow our team.”
Davenport guides his team around a set of core principles that are focused on not only providing outstanding services, but also giving back and making positive contributions to the world. The company is proud to support mission trips and outreach efforts, as well as donations to local organizations in the locations of all its district offices.
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