Minister of State for the Office of Public Works Patrick O’Donovan TD unveiled a plaque to mark the completion of the new Bandon Flood Relief Scheme representing an investment of some €30.5 million in flood defences for the town. The scheme ensures 392 properties are now protected from potential significant flooding, 177 of which are residential and family homes in the local Bandon area.
Minister O’Donovan was joined at the ceremony in the Town Hall, Bandon, by Mayor of the County of Cork, Cllr. Danny Collins, CEO of Cork County Council, Tim Lucey, OPW officials, engineering consultants Byrne Looby, contractors Will Bros Ltd and members of the community.
The new flood relief scheme was delivered by the Office of Public Works (OPW) in partnership with Cork County Council and comprises river conveyance improvement, defence walls, replacement of the pedestrian bridge, flood defence embankments, pumping stations and service diversions. The scheme’s design has successfully integrated the flood relief works with the public realm enhancement works. These have seen improvements to Seán Hales place with new paving, seating, planting and lighting. In this way, the scheme delivers in terms of flood protection as well as adding value in terms of enhancing the public realm.
Unveiling the new Scheme, Minister O’Donovan commented, “I am delighted to be here today to unveil the new Bandon Flood Relief Scheme which will protect more than 390 residential and family homes, and businesses, in the local area. I know the town of Bandon and I have a lot of family connections here. I have seen first hand the devastating impact that flooding has had on the town of Bandon over the last decade. I know what this scheme means to the people of the town. I have spoken with residents and local business owners who have seen homes or businesses lost to recent floods, and I know the damage these floods have done to the wider community in Bandon. Flood defence works in Bandon are a priority for me in my role as OPW Minister and I am delighted for the families and local businesses here.”
“All OPW flood relief schemes, such as the one here in Bandon, factor in climate adaptation at all stages of planning and works and, in doing so, we ensure that homes and communities across the country will be protected when it comes to facing the effects of climate change.”
Mayor of the County of Cork, Cllr Danny Collins highlighted how, “the personal and economic impact of flooding can never be truly measured and, in a climate changing world, it is vital that we work together to create on the ground solutions for our county’s towns and villages. The Office of Public Works, in partnership with Cork County Council, has developed a number of flood relief schemes across Cork County in areas which have unfortunately experienced the devastation of a flood incident first-hand. Now, in West Cork alone, 1000 properties will be protected from the effects of flooding and in partnership with the OPW, Cork County Council looks forward to advancing and providing this reassurance to many more.”
The Bandon Flood Relief Scheme is one of some 150 additional schemes under the Government’s €1.3 billion investment in managing Ireland’s flood risk through the renewed National Development Plan.
It is one of eight OPW flood relief schemes completed across County Cork, with more than 50 schemes completed nationwide. Together, these schemes provide protection to over 11,900 family homes and businesses across the country, preventing up to €1.9 billion in potential damage and losses due to flooding.
Chief Executive of Cork County Council Tim Lucey concluded, “the Bandon Flood Relief Scheme demonstrates the wide ranging, positive impact these schemes have on communities. The immeasurable benefits have a very real impact on people’s lives by reducing the worry and stress caused by living in a flood-prone location. Now, 392 property owners in Bandon can have confidence that they are protected from significant flood events which is in keeping with a town that is being reinvigorated. Bandon’s Transportation Public Realm Enhancement Plan combined with Active Travel projects provide further evidence of the continued growth of Bandon, which has seen more than €50m in public investment in recent years, and will result in the recognition of Bandon as a premier market town, with a unique sense of place, which supports ease of movement for all, embraces its rich built and natural heritage and enhances its role as the gateway to West Cork.”
Source: Cork County Council