Union Avenue Kroger continues to develop, bringing vision to fruition.
In partnership with the Mississippi Engineering Group, Pickering was selected to assist the State of Mississippi's Department of Environmental Quality in implementing the Governor's Hurricane Katrina recovery effort. The Pickering water resources team was given the task to prepare the water supply portion of the Mississippi Gulf Region Water and Wastewater Plan in just six months - a project that could easily have taken three times as long to complete. The plan satisfied the requirements of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Community Development Block Grant program necessary for the impacted counties to receive 100% grant funding. Subsequent to the approval of the plan, Pickering developed conceptual design documents for eleven wastewater infrastructure and eighteen water infrastructure projects that were constructed in and distributed between hard-hit Hancock, Jackson and Pearl River counties in southern Mississippi. Pickering has continued to provide construction-phase assistance to both the MDEQ and the local utility authorities in each county.
Before construction activities could commence on any of the Gulf Region water and wastewater infrastructure projects, the area in which the project was proposed to be located had to be "environmentally cleared" through the process required by the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). Pickering scientists on the natural resources team from the Jackson and Biloxi offices did the required field work. The projects required an assessment of the potential impacts on such things as archaeological and cultural resources, air quality, surface and groundwater quality, wetlands, and floodplains. As a direct result of the work performed by the scientists, a number of the conceptual designs of the projects were changed in order to minimize, and in several cases, avoid, unnecessary environmental impacts.