The flooded N80 road in Irishtown Mountmellick in 2017. Photo: Denis Byrne
More than three years since the big flood in Mountmellick, finalised plans for a flood defence system are soon to be placed on public display.
The €3.3 million Mountmellick Flood Relief scheme will include flood walls along the Owenass River through the town among other measures.
Surveys are underway at the moment around the town, having been deemed as essential works during the Level 5 Covid-19 period.
Image below of investigations in progress.
Paul O'Loughlin is Laois County Council's project manager for the scheme, which is being designed by specialist company JBA Consulting, in partnership with the Office of Public Works.
He gave the latest update to the Leinster Express.
"Topographical surveys are completed. Ecological & Environmental surveys have also progressed.
"Site investigation works are ongoing with Phase A works which are mostly concentrated in the town area substantially complete. Phase B works which will focus mainly towards the upper scheme extents is due to progress soon and be completed in a matter of weeks.
"CCTV surveys commenced for a number of culverts and pipes lines and will be completed in the coming days.
"The hydraulic models for the scheme are well advanced and scheme options are currently being developed and assessed which will be further informed by the Site investigation works," Mr McLoughlin said.
The plans will be on display in March and he said the public has a vitally important role.
"There will be a public consultation process on the developed options in March 2021 to inform and discuss viable scheme options with all stakeholders. The continued input of stakeholders at all stages but at this stage in particular is of vital importance to assist and guide the selection of the preferred options which will follow on from this process.
"The format of the consultation will depend on the situation with Covid 19 and the prevailing public health guidance closer to that date will ultimately determine the final approach to be taken. The intention is to get the information as widely circulated as possible utilizing various means while encouraging and assisting wide spread participation of stakeholders.
"Once preferred options have been identified and again the public have been consulted on them the process moves to seeking the required planning consent for the scheme.
The Mountmellick Flood Relief Scheme has its own website for the public to engage with. See www.mountmellickfrs.ie