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23 million pound scheme given go aheadPlanning consent has been granted byWarrington Borough Council for the constructionof thefirst phase of the Environment Agency's newRiver Mersey floodalleviation scheme in Warrington.
The scheme was granted planning permission at a meetingin April, meaningwe are one step closer to beginning the construction of a series of walls andembankments along the RiverMersey andits tributataries that will increase flood protection toover 2,000 local homes and businesses.
The £23million scheme is being jointly funded by the Environment Agency, Warrington Borough Council and some private sector businesses that will directly benefit from the scheme. Central Government has pledged £17million towards the scheme and we are now in the final stages of securinglocal contributions and hope to begin construction in October.
In preparation for this, we will undertake some preliminary works over the summer. This will unfortunatelyinclude some essential tree felling, but we will be planting many more trees than we remove, with a view to improving the landscape in Victoria Park in the long term.
The first phase of the schemefocuses on the Latchford area of Warrington, and will see the construction of concrete flood walls and earth embankments in the Knutsford Rd area, from Bridgefoot through to Victoria Park, which will reduce the risk of flooding to around 1,500 homes and businesses.As part of the works, the entrance to Victoria Park will be raised and landscaped to provide a new flood barrier and a much better entrance to the park.
Phases two and three of the scheme are in the design and planning stages and will provide increased flood protection to around a further 500 properties in the Howley, Padgate, Woolston and Cinnamon Brow areas.
We also plan to build defences at Westy. These were originally going to be built by a developer who had hoped to build new houses in the area. However, because of the downturn in the housing market, we cannot be sure when this development will take place, so we have decided to build the defences ourselves, as they form a key component of the overall scheme.To do this we will need to submit a planning application, which we will be doing next year when we have developed our designs and consulted with the local community.