In 1973 the firm Eckbo, Dean, Austin and Williams adopted the EDAW moniker. An early pioneer in Modernist landscape design and regional-scale environmental planning, the firm ultimately traces its roots to the partnership formed in 1939 between Garrett Eckbo and his brother-in-law, Edward Williams, in San Francisco. Francis Dean and Don Austin joined the partnership in 1953 and 1964, respectively. EDAW steadily expanded, adding offices in Atlanta, Georgia; Denver, Colorado; and Alexandria, Virginia, among others. With international offices first opened in Sydney, Australia, in 1989, followed by London, England, in 1992, the firm eventually grew to be one of the largest landscape architecture and planning firms in the world, with 25 offices worldwide.
Notable projects include Centennial Olympic Park in Atlanta (1996), the park system in Disney’s Celebration New Town in Florida (1996), and the Monumental Core Master Plan in Washington, D.C., for the National Capitol Planning Commission (1993). Among its environmental planning work, EDAW developed the case to protect the Florida Everglades ecosystem in 1991 for the U.S. Department of Justice. The firm also developed a comprehensive plan for downtown Manchester, United Kingdom, after an IRA bomb destroyed 100,000 square meters of retail and office space there. EDAW was acquired by AECOM Technology Corporation in 2005.