Waterfront under scrutiny

EXECUTIVES from the Environment Agency are visiting Ipswich today to see the site where a massive �50 million Thames-style tidal flood barrier is to be built.

EXECUTIVES from the Environment Agency are visiting Ipswich today to see the site where a massive �50 million Thames-style tidal flood barrier is to be built.

Work on the Ipswich waterfront flood defence scheme is set to start this year and it is expected to be in operation by 2012.

The main feature of the scheme - the largest in the country being started by the Environment Agency this year - will be a tidal surge barrier constructed across the River Orwell at the New Cut.

Agency chairman Chris Smith said: “The flood defence scheme that we're building will make a real difference to the confidence developers can have in the future of Ipswich.


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“It is also a fantastic example of how the Environment Agency can work with local councils and the community to overcome the hurdles and get schemes like this off the ground, making a real difference to the future of whole communities.”

Paul West, Ipswich Borough Council's transport and engineering portfolio holder, said: “This is a very big step forward in the protection of Ipswich from flooding and we are delighted to be working so closely with the Environment Agency on this major project.”

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The first phase of work on the flood defence scheme, funded in partnership by the agency and the council, will be to raise river banks near Bath Street and near the Wet Dock entrance.

After their visit to Ipswich, agency board members will go on to Jaywick to see the �10m flood defence scheme recently completed there to protect more than 2,600 properties.

It is also a chance for the officials to find out more about the region's changing coastline and to look at different and innovative approaches to coastal management.

Should a Thames-style flood barrier be a top priority for Ipswich? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

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