New scheme will protect 3,000 homes in Exeter

Working on behalf of the Environment Agency, Team Van Oord has begun preparatory work for the first phase of a £30m flood defence scheme to upgrade flood defences in Exeter in Devon.

When complete the new scheme will reduce flood risk to approximately 3,000 homes and businesses across the city.

The contract for phase 1 of the work has been awarded to Team Van Oord who will carry out the work on behalf of the Environment Agency and its partners, Devon County Council and Exeter City Council.

Phase 1 will include deepening the existing Trew’s flood relief channel, lowering the spill weir at the top of the channel, and removing a ‘check weir’ at the bottom of the channel. These works will increase the flow capacity of the main flood channel.

Other works include the construction of a meandering stream through the centre of the flood relief channel, construction of fish passes on Trew’s weir, and a low level pedestrian access across the middle of the flood relief channel.

In order to reduce construction traffic, excavated material from the flood relief channel will be temporarily stored on site and then re-used during phase 2 of the project.

Some enabling works have already taken place, but the project will get underway in earnest with vegetation clearance on 7 July, followed by on-site mobilisation on 21 July.

Maurits den Broeder, chairman of Team Van Oord, said: “We are delighted to have been awarded this contract by the Environment Agency and its partners.

“We look forward to reducing the risk and fear of flooding, and the misery it can cause, for several thousand people living in Exeter.”

The Environment Agency and Team Van Oord will take all possible steps to minimise disruption for local residents. These will include providing continued public access to the ‘island’ between the River Exe and the Trew’s flood relief channel during construction, and ensuring that the footpath and cycle path alongside Trew’s flood relief channel will remain open.

Work on phase 2 is planned to start in autumn 2015 and designs for the second phase are still being finalised.

A series of public exhibitions to seek people’s views about these designs will be held between 11 July and 19 July at various locations around Exeter.

3 July 2014