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One of the best places to work in Kansas City is doubling its world headquarters

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- An expansion of Burns and McDonnell's corporate headquarters brought together Missouri Governor Jay Nixon, Mayor Sly James and Jackson County Executive Mike Sanders to celebrate Thursday morning.

The design-build firm is doubling its size, building 450,000 square feet of office space on the site of the former Beth Shalom Congregation temple, which has been a fixture in South Kansas City for more than 50 years.

"Now in the next six months, we will begin the doubling of our world headquarters," said Greg Grave, CEO of Burns and McDonnell. "And it's highly likely we will hire our 5,000th employee. Today we make a new promise: In just less than another three years we promise a wonderful new capstone to Ward Parkway."

When the first phase is finished in the spring of 2016, the company says it will have hired 1,400 new workers. When the second phase is complete, Burns and McDonnell will have added a total of 2,100 high-paying, homegrown, architectural and engineering jobs to the region.

The project includes a day care center that can accommodate up to 144 children of company employees. And there's going to be a parking garage with 800 spaces.

Recognized as Kansas City's best place to work, the company also promised to continue to make a positive difference in the area.

"The positive impact of adding these new jobs to the Kansas City economy simply can't be exaggerated," said Mayor Sly James. "Every person behind me represents a quality job in this community. These individuals along with many others will have a profound economic impact across this entire city. It's exactly this type of economic development that we have to encourage, should encourage and will continue to encourage."

This building project will cost more than $109 million and is being paid for by the company and Van Trust Real Estate. The company will receive incentives from the state and city if it meets job creation and investment targets. Burns and McDonnell expects to expand its services in a number of specialties, including energy solutions. Of the 2,100 new jobs tied to this project, the firm has already hired 250 people.

According to dice.com, Missouri is the fastest growing state for technology careers, of which Burns and McDonnell offers some. Technology jobs grew by nearly 8.5 percent in the Show-Me State last year.

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