Pascagoula acquiring land for drainage improvement project

Pascagoula working to mitigate flooding issues

PASCAGOULA, Miss. (WLOX) - The city of Pascagoula is working to mitigate flooding issues in several neighborhoods by making drainage improvements. One of these neighborhoods is Briarwood Estates, which Rosalynn Thompson has called home for 11 years. Thompson says she and her neighbors remain ready for even the slightest chance of rain.

“I immediately go into panic mode and anxiety,” said Thompson. “The neighbors and I, we get together, and we start preparing.”

Not even three weeks ago, Thompson nervously watched as the rising water inched towards her home.

“To see it up to the door, and once it got right here to the entrance of my house, I took off my shoes because I knew I’d have to wade in the water,” said Thompson.

Rising Water approaches Rosalynn Thompson's front door.
Rising Water approaches Rosalynn Thompson's front door. (Source: WLOX)

For around six years, Pascagoula has been acquiring easements along ditches throughout the city and now only one more piece of property needs to be acquired before work can begin. Pascagoula City Engineer Geoffrey Clemens says improving the ditches is a start, but it will not fully mitigate flooding.

“I hope nobody expects it to be a miracle fix because it’s not,” said Clemens. “It’s definitely one step in the process.”

Clemens says this is the first step to correcting the exit channel, helping to improve drainage.

“It’s kind of like starting on the back end and working into the subdivision. This is where everything flows to,” said Clemens. “We want to get it dressed up, and cleaned up, and improved first so all the water has a place to go.”

While flooding continues to remain an issue in Briarwood Estates, Thompson says she will continue preparing ahead of any rainfall.

“Today, I just moved my garden bricks. They were right here where my garden is, but I stacked them up here because just last week they flowed down the street,” said Thompson. “So, I keep my sandbags here in front of my garage, my backdoor, side door, and front door year-round.”

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