The Challenge:

Loe Bar Outfall prevents The Loe, the largest freshwater lake in Cornwall, from flooding and the eroded concrete on the outfall had to be replaced by October 2020. The Loe and Loe Bar are both Sites of Special Scientific Interest, and a designated traffic route was required across the Bar to minimise disturbance.

There is no direct highway access to the outfall. The nearest road is over 600 metres away, across the sandy Loe Bar. All material and equipment had to be transported across the beach by tracked dumper.

Due to the seriously exposed nature of the site, major erosion to the sacrificial concrete outfall surround had left the outfall at serious risk of failing over the coming winter. A fast-track solution was required to achieve winter readiness.

The entire work area was also affected by tides, leading to restricted working hours. Various stakeholders including the National Trust had to have input to the methodology and timings of the works.

The Solution:

A specialist contractor in sprayed concrete application was engaged as soon as the works were awarded to Kier. This specialist proposed a suitable material and design that was adopted by the client. 140 tonnes of this material would be required.

The work was programmed to be undertaken in 20 shifts throughout September, with a long weekend break in the middle when the tides were not suitable for work to continue. The work did not have to be completed until the end of October, so this programme allowed for a month of contingency.

Close communication with stakeholders allowed swift processing of the necessary permits and approvals. Collaboration with all aspects of our supply chain assisted in producing a successful outcome.

The Impact:

All 20 shifts were undertaken as planned without issue, and the works were completed successfully on 24th September 2020, thus ensuring winter readiness for the outfall.

" I have been impressed by Kier’s ability to quickly draw together the resources and deliver the sprayed concrete solution in double quick time. The location of the repair meant that the works had to be completed before the winter storms arrived, other wise there was a very real risk of losing part of this important sea outfall structure. Thank you to the site team and the sub- contractors for an efficiently executed piece of work. "
David Harker Catchment Engineer Environment Agency

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