When it comes to our annual "Top" surveys of Southeast construction and design firms, I've found that the number of firms that decide to participate is one of the more consistent indicators of market strength.

If that's true, then the returns for this year's Top Design Firms survey are a positive sign for the Southeast construction industry. For this latest survey–which we use to generate our annual Top Design Firms ranking—the response is the strongest we've had in several years.

This year, we received survey responses from more than 115 engineering and architectural firms working in the Southeast region of Florida, Georgia and the Carolinas. That's an increase of more than 20 compared to a year ago, when just over 90 regional firms decided to participate. Moreover, it will result in the deepest Southeast Top Design Firms ranking we've published since 2008.

Again, based on past history, that kind of participation seems to indicate that a greater percentage of Southeast design firms are feeling good enough about their business that they are willing to publicize their revenue results in this way. And this year's numbers again appear to back up that theory.

blog post photo
Little Diversified Architectural Consulting designed the $15.2 million, 113,000-sq-ft Connextions headquarters project in Orlando, for United Health Group subsidiary Optum. Orlando-based Williams Company Southeast was the contractor. (Photo by Ben Tanner Photography)

For instance, collectively, the top 115 firms that participated in this year's survey reported just over $3 billion in 2013 design revenue from projects located in the four-state region. By comparison, the 90 firms included on last year's Top Design Firms ranking collectively reported nearly $2.3 billion in regional revenue during 2012.

We'll need to dig deeper into this data to discern what these numbers really mean. And we'll contact Southeast designers to get their opinions on market trends. ENR Southeast will report these when we publish the Top Design Firms ranking in our May print edition. For now, here's a look at the 115 design firms that you'll see in that ranking, in alphabetical order.

A&P Consulting Transportation Engineers, Corp.
AECOM Technology Corp.
Affiliated Engineers, Inc.
AHA Consulting Engineers, Inc.
AIM Engineering & Surveying, Inc.
Alley, Williams, Carmen & King, Inc.
Alliance Consulting Engineers, Inc.
ArchitectWala.com / Newport Design Group
Atkins North America
Ayres Associates
Bowman Consulting
BRPH Architects - Engineers, Inc.
Burns & McDonnell
Carollo Engineers, Inc.
CASCO Diversified Corporation
CDH Partners, Inc.
CEMS Engineering inc
Chen Moore and Associates
Cherokee Enterprises, Inc.
CJMW Architecture
Collins Engineers, Inc.
Connelly & Wicker Inc.
Cooper Carry, Inc.
CPH, Inc.
Davis-Martin-Powell & Associates, Inc.
DLR Group
Douglas Wood Associates, Inc.
DRMP, Inc.
England-Thims & Miller, Inc.
ESP Associates, P.A.
Fanning/Howey Associates, Inc.
Finfrock Design, Inc.
Florida Engineering Group, Inc.
Gannett Fleming, Inc.
GEL Engineering, LLC.
Geosyntec Consultants, Inc
GLE Associates, Inc.
Goodwyn Mills and Cawood, Inc.
Greeley and Hansen
GTP Consulting Engineers, Inc
Hargrove Engineers + Constructors
Hatch Mott MacDonald
HKS, Inc.
HNM Architecture, LLC
HNTB Corporation
HuntonBrady Architects
Jones Edmunds & Associates, Inc.
Kamm Consulting, Inc
KCI Technologies Inc.
Kimley-Horn and Associates, Inc.
Kisinger Campo & Associates, Corp
Lawson Group Architects, Inc.
Lord Aeck Sargent
McKim & Creed, Inc.
Mead & Hunt, Inc.
Merrick & Company
Michael Baker International
Morrison Hershfield
Moseley Architects
MWH Global
Niles Bolton Associates
NOVA Engineering and Environmental LLC
O'Neal, Inc.
Parsons Brinckerhoff
Perkins Eastman
PFVS Architecture
Phillips Partnership, PC
Pond & Company, Inc
Power Grid Engineering, LLC
R.J. Behar & Company, Inc.
Ramey Kemp & Associates, Inc.
RMF Engineering, Inc.
Robert and Company
RS&H, Inc.
Rule Joy Trammell + Rubio
Schenkel & Shultz, Inc.
Seamon Whiteside
SfL+a Architects
Smallwood, Reynolds, Stewart, Stewart & Associates, Inc.
Smith Seckman Reid, Inc.
Stanley Consultants
Stevens & Wilkinson
Syska Hennessy Group
Terracon Consultants, Inc.
The Beck Group
Thornton Tomasetti, Inc.
TLC Engineering for Architecture, Inc.
Universal Engineering Sciences, Inc.
Vanasse Hangen Brustlin, Inc.
VOA Associates Incorporated
W.K. Dickson & Co., Inc.
Wakefield Beasley& Associates Architects
Walker Parking Consultants
Wantman Group, Inc.
Wetherill Engineering, inc
Woolpert, Inc.
Zachry Holdings, Inc.
Zyscovich Architects