Reflecting on a Successful 2021
With 2022 quickly approaching, McGill is taking the time to look back on the many favorable outcomes and positive changes that 2021 brought. Although we have our sights set on a prosperous future, the start of a new year is an ideal occasion to pause and give thought to the past 12 months.
Reflection is an essential tool in the process of growth and gives us the opportunity to leverage our strengths and enter into the new year with both a solid foundation and a hunger to surpass previous expectations. McGill President Andy Lovingood said that 2022 is all about “getting better at what we do best.”
LOOKING BACK ON WHAT MCGILL DID BEST THIS YEAR:
McGill started off the year strong with the Mission North Tower in Asheville being recognized by the Engineering News-Record (ENR) as the Best Healthcare Project nationwide. We were honored to serve as the civil engineering firm and part of the team who completed this ambitious project.
McGill Civil / Site Practice Area Lead Ben Cathey said, “It was a real honor to be a part of this project that is so important for Asheville and all of western North Carolina. It was both a challenging and gratifying project comprised of a top-notch team. McGill takes pride in all of our projects, including this one, but being named Best Healthcare Project by ENR shows we aren’t the only ones proud of it.”
In February, McGill celebrated Engineers Week by interviewing five of our engineers from different disciplines. Each of them shared their story and what being a part of this exciting profession means to them. Common themes of teamwork, problem solving, and facing new challenges emerged in each interview.
As we took the time to recognize some of our talented engineers, they were also hard at work wrapping up Asheville’s Downtown Haywood Streetscape Project. McGill was honored to partner with the City of Asheville to provide surveying, site design, and construction administration for this creative initiative.
In honor of Groundwater Awareness Week, McGill spoke up for groundwater. McGill Vice President Keith Webb said, “Water is life and an important component for the economy of our clients and the safety and health of their citizens. Groundwater can and does play an important role for utilities and municipalities to meet these needs. The protection of groundwater quality is critically important, which requires the need for the proper treatment and disposal of wastewater to protect the groundwater supply. We all have an impact on groundwater and should be aware that the way we use the water and efforts to reduce the amount we each use and reduce contamination — which can find its way into the groundwater supply — are important.”
April was an exciting month for our electrical team as they were selected to perform a generator assessment and study on the Carolina Theatre onsite generator. Rich with history, the Carolina Theatre has been one of Downtown Durham’s most cherished institutions since 1926, and McGill was delighted to be a part of the study that evaluated size requirements to meet code, investigated existing conditions, viewed options for the location of the generator, evaluated existing electrical power distribution service, and provided cost estimates.
Twelve McGill employees from our Asheville office participated, in person or virtually, in the annual Asheville Chamber Challenge 5K race on May 14th. Hosted by the Asheville Area Chamber of Commerce, the race promoted community wellness through friendly competition between Asheville area businesses. It was not only a great race but also a celebration of getting to spend time in a group setting outdoors again, after over a year of COVID-19 restrictions.
McGill has a long history of mentoring young engineers from interns to project managers. In June of this year, we welcomed two college students to the Hickory office as interns and they worked as part of our water and wastewater team. One of the most common issues young graduates face when applying for an engineering position is work experience. Internships provide students the opportunity to explore the engineering field early in their studies to better identify the areas of specialty that may be a good fit. McGill offers interns the opportunity to acquire industry and hands-on experience.
In July, McGill began seeing positive results from Phase 1 of the Fountain Park residential subdivision. The project, located off Pond Road near Asheville Outlets, consisted of 100 single-family homes and 140 townhouse units on approximately 55 acres. Our civil engineering team assisted the developer, from the initial project inception with master planning and entitlement procurement through detailed design, permitting, bidding, construction, and closeout services.
In August, the Association of State Dam Safety Officials (ASDSO) selected the North Fork Reservoir Spillway and Embankment Improvement Project in Black Mountain as the 2021 National Rehabilitation Project of the Year. McGill was proud to be a part of the team that worked to design and create a system that complies with regulatory standards.
McGill strengthened our relationship with clients in Tennessee through our projects and partnerships in the area, and in September we looked back on how we had now assisted those clients in all practices. One such project with great success was our work with the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA), Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development (TNECD), and the City of Jefferson City on the Jefferson City Industrial Complex site located between Highway 11E and Odyssey Road in Jefferson City.
On October 20th, McGill attended the North Fork Reservoir in Asheville for a ribbon cutting ceremony in celebration of the completed dam improvements. When the dam at the North Fork Reservoir was built in 1955, it was in line with the industry standards, but as technology advanced in science and engineering, the expectations and best practices evolved.
McGill attended the North Carolina Section of the American Water Works Association (NC AWWA) and North Carolina Member Association of the Water Environment Federation (NC WEA) 101st Annual Conference that took place from November 14th-17th at the Benton Convention Center in Winston-Salem. This conference was a great opportunity for our team to connect further with clients, manufacturers, and other water professionals.
In December, McGill recognized RJ Mozeley as he stepped into his new role as the financial services manager. “I’ve been blessed to have the opportunity to help clients plan for their financial future as they invest in their infrastructure,” said RJ. “Having the chance to influence how a community addresses some of its most expensive and critical challenges as my career is truly rewarding.”
OUR CLIENTS WERE THE BEST PART OF OUR YEAR
Despite the diversity of projects and initiatives that McGill was a part of this past year, one thing remains consistent — the appreciation we have for our clients and our dedication to providing them with excellent service. Our foundation is built on creating lasting relationships with communities, and we feel privileged to continue those relationships, as well as form new relationships in 2022.