Who We Are
We are Dar. We work together with our people to build the future.
At Dar, we provide planning, design, management and consultancy for the world’s most important and exciting projects. Together with our team of experts, we embrace challenges to empower our communities. In suburbs and city centers, deserts and metropolitan areas, war zones and sacred shrines, our projects shape our people’s lives.
With our team of 9,250 staff members, we operate in 47 offices in the Middle East, Africa, Asia, and Europe. Our five principal design centers are located in Beirut, Cairo, London, Pune, and Amman.
And in everything, we seek progress for our communities.
Dar Al-Handasah's Journey:
Sharing in Owning a Sustainable Future
1956 The Beginnings
In November 1956, four professors from the American University of Beirut open a specialized engineering firm to meet rising regional demand. It is the beginning of Dar Al-Handasah. For its headquarters, the firm chooses Beirut, the most dynamic market in the region at the time.
1958 – Dar receives its first big commission – the Kuwait Power Station. From there, the company gradually evolves, winning projects in the Middle East, Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) and Africa.
1970 The Partnership Model
Dar Al-Handasah becomes Dar Al-Handasah Shair and Partners. Dar takes the revolutionary step of handing 60% of ownership to senior employees who have distinguished themselves by their leadership qualities and technical skills. The partnership model drives Dar forward as senior managers realize their growth is essential to the firm’s development.
Dar Al-Handasah Shair and Partners is now one of the region’s leading firms, less than a decade after being founded.
1974 Dar Expands
Dar Al-Handasah Shair and Partners enacts a bold plan to add new services and expand its existing client bases during the 70s and 80s. New projects begin to flow, not only from the Middle East, but also from new markets in Algeria, Nigeria and elsewhere. The result is Dar’s greatest decade to date for global growth.
Working closely with our clients enables us to establish and maintain long-term partnerships that carry on to this day.
1986 The start of the global firm
With the industry’s reliance on increasingly specialized resources, Dar Al-Handasah acquires several important names in engineering, management and architecture.
The decision results in a global multi-disciplinary group capable of delivering a raft of leading specialized services.
1986 Dar acquires its first company, Perkins+Will (Chicago, USA)
1990 Dar acquires Penspen (London, UK)
1991 A Nation Rebuilt
Dar Al-Handasah spearheads the landmark planning of Lebanon’s reconstruction following 25 years of civil strife, as Dar Beirut resumes full operations in 1991. Some of our most significant projects include:
- Central Beirut District infrastructure
- Rafic Hariri International Airport
- Beirut Port
- Roads and infrastructure
2017 Dar Today
Today, the firm ranks as one of the world’s top design consultants. We mark six decades of building successful client relationships, attracting the best and brightest employees and keeping pace with increasingly complex challenges.
And today, as we did more than half-a-century ago, we continue to partner with our people to contribute to the societies we serve.
Corporate Social Responsibility: Building a Better Future, Together
At Dar Al-Handasah, we view corporate social responsibility (CSR) as an opportunity to get closer to our communities. For us, CSR means more than donating. It is a commitment to our people, our environment and our societies.
For years, we have extended our support for organizations in the fields of education, culture, society, health, and the environment. Our people have also been active in reaching out to our communities to create possibilities for growth.
As we seek to build long-term solutions with our people and societies, we also aim to preserve the environment for coming generations. Our teams have redefined progress. At Dar, progress means reshaping the future together.