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£21million flood risk management scheme ‘making good progress’

12 Feb 2024 4 minute read
Visual. Credit: NRW

A £21million flood risk management scheme which aims to reduce flood risk to 2,000 properties is making good progress one year on, according to Natural Resources Wales.

Homes and businesses in the Lliswerry area of Newport are vulnerable to flooding from the River Usk during periods of heavy rainfall and high tides. Without intervention, it is estimated that sea level rise and more extreme rainfall could lead to more extensive flooding in the area in the future.

The flood risk management scheme began in February 2023, constructed with future climate change projections in mind, accounting for sea level rise over the next 50 years.

Protection

The new defences, a combination of flood walls, gates and grass embankments, will reduce flood risk to homes in the areas, as well as important industrial areas, providing increased job security by protecting the places people work, keeping businesses open and supporting the wider local economy.

The work includes bolstering parts of the existing 1350m flood embankment along the eastern riverbank and constructing new flood walls, raising a section of highway and the installation of a large flood gate.

The 700 linear meters of sheet piles installed to a depth of 10m has been completed, helping to strengthen the embankment along the river Usk.

The sheet piles form almost half of the new flood defence and were inserted using a hydraulic press, which has helped to significantly reduce the vibrations and noise disruption to local wildlife and industry.

The majority of the reinforced concrete wall around the Felnex industrial estate has also been completed which forms a further 35% of the overall flood protection.

2,000 homes protected

Preparation work for the raised section of the highway off Eastbank Road has almost been completed. This will provide an alternative route for road users in the area, should the floodgate on Corporation Road be operated for maintenance purposes or prior to anticipated peak tidal flows.

The foundation layer has also been completed as part of the work to improve the nearby Wales Coast Path to enhance the route visually and offer greater accessibility.

The total value of the scheme is approximately £21 million, and the work is expected to reduce the flood risk to over 2,000 properties in the area.

Progress

Steve Morgan, Head of South East Wales Operations for NRW said: We’re really pleased to be able to share the progress of the flood risk management scheme at Newport, which underlines our commitment to increasing communities’ resilience to climate change and reducing the risk of flood impacts to people and property across Wales.

There is no denying that climate change is happening now and is increasing the frequency and severity of extreme weather events. We have seen the very real impacts of that recently with multiple named storms hitting Wales over the autumn and winter months.

While we hope this scheme provides residents and businesses with a greater peace of mind when it comes to reducing the risk of flooding in this area, we also strongly urge people to sign up for flood warnings and regularly check flood risk via our website.

Extreme weather

Minister for Climate Change, Julie James said: We can expect rising sea levels and extreme weather conditions to increase as a direct result of climate change and that is why we are working with NRW to support communities that will be most affected.

Stephenson Street flood scheme is an example of this – by helping to protect 2,000 properties in the area, it’s fantastic to hear of the progress being made and I look forward to when the work is completed in the Autumn.

Work on the scheme is due to be completed in autumn of this year.

Anyone who is concerned about flooding can check the risk in their area with a simple postcode checker on NRW’s website, and sign up for the free flood warning service.

Further scheme updates may also be found on NRW’s online project page.


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