Shoreham scheme harnesses the unique power of the ‘Giken’

The Shoreham Adur Tidal Walls scheme is on schedule for completion by the end of the year, with the use of a Giken press piling train ensuring good progress over the summer months.

The scheme is being carried out by Team Van Oord on behalf of the Environment Agency, Coast to Capital Local Enterprise Partnership, Adur District Council and West Sussex County Council.

Work on site commenced in October 2016, and when complete the scheme will significantly reduce flood risk to more than 2,300 properties in Shoreham and East Lancing – as well as protecting important local infrastructure such as the road network, railway line and Shoreham Airport.

The scheme is separated into 10 reaches, or lengths of the estuarine bank. The new defences include steel sheet piling, concrete walls, flood glass and earth embankments.

A major component to ensure the project is completed by the end of 2018 has been the use of a Giken press piling train to drive in the steel piles.

The Giken silent piling unit, power pack, and crane are mounted onto the piles (a ‘reaction stand’), using the installed piles as tracks – like a train. The Giken piler drives piles silently by pressing them into the ground.

The unit is located at the front of the ‘train’, pressing piles in at the front. The whole train walks along, following the Giken silent piler to install piles in a linear fashion.

The equipment has proved to be key to working in the tight spaces between the houseboats on the estuary and the houses landside of the path, driving in the steel piles to form the wall’s core support.

The process needed to be carefully planned and managed by Team Van Oord to ensure that stakeholder agreements were completed on time; the specialist Giken press piling train needed to be booked six months in advance as there are only a very few in the world.

An Environment Agency spokesperson said:

“We would like to thank everyone in Shoreham-by-Sea for their continued patience and support.

“More than two-thirds of the Shoreham Adur tidal walls flood defence scheme has now been completed. Having started construction in October 2016 we expect to finish by the end of this year.”

Rob Pearson, Project Manager, Team Van Oord, said:

“In the W5 reach we have had to install some 1,176 sheet piles – each one 11 metres long.

“The work was complicated by being close to 40 houseboats along a stretch of 700m. However, we made sure to consult with stakeholders and houseboat owners, keeping them informed on developments.

“Thanks to their cooperation, we were able to continue the pile driving works in this reach without closing a larger area to the public.”

17 August 2018