£16m Stonehaven flood prevention works delayed by ‘significant’ number of bidders

The tender process for flood defence work in Stonehaven has been delayed because so many contractors have bid for the work.

Aberdeenshire Council said it had drawn up a shortlist of five for the £16 million contract, but the timescale has “slipped by a few months” due to the “significant level of interest” from firms wishing to deliver the scheme.

The project aims to provide a standard of protection well above the current Association of British Insurers requirements, reducing flood risk to 372 residential properties, two public utility sites, a school and an emergency service site.

The development involves a number of elements, including;

• Alteration to five bridges along the River Carron; removing, replacing and raising the Red Bridge and Green Bridge; repositioning the Green Bridge; removing, refurbishing and reinstating the White Bridge in a raised position; replacing the Bridgefield Bridge parapet with a reinforced glass type material; and raising and widening the Beach Bridge.

• Construction of flood walls between the Red Bridge and the river mouth.

• The island downstream of the Green Bridge will be removed.

• Installation of two higher capacity culverts on the Glaslaw Burn and a new culvert under the gardens of Cameron Street.

• The construction of a new pedestrian walkway from Bridgefield Bridge to the Beach.

Overall, the project is designed to provide a 0.5% chance of occurrence (1 in 200-year flood event) standard of protection, including an allowance for climate change (33% increase to 2080) and a safety margin catering for uncertainties.

With five-strong potential contractor shortlist now drawn up, the team behind the scheme is now entering the next phase of the tender.

It is hoped a preferred bidder will be chosen by Autumn, with work then being able to start on the ground in later in the year.

Principal engineer Rachel Kennedy said: “While the timescale we initially predicted has slipped by a few months, that’s to be expected with a project of this size and complexity and given the significant level of interest from firms wishing to deliver the scheme on the council’s behalf.

“The council and its consultants are keen to keep the local community informed of progress and to work through any issues as they arise, delivering a flood protection scheme which offers the community security.

“Clearly everyone is keen to see this important protection for the town in place at the earliest opportunity, but it has to be done right, within budget and ensuring we take account of the complex requirements across the scheme area.”

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