Council set to work 7 days a week to speed up completion of new road drainage scheme in Looe

Cornwall Council will be on site 7 days a week from 16 February to minimise local disruption while they put in place an upgraded drainage system for the upper portion of St Martin’s Road, Looe.

Designed to prevent surface flooding and protect residents and road users in the event of a ‘100 year rainfall event - a phrase used when describing the 1 in a 100 chance of a severe storm hitting an area in any given year - the design also factors in work to future proof the scheme against the predicted effects of climate change.

The new highway drainage scheme complements improvements put in place by the Council on St Martin’s Road in 2013 and 2014 which included the installation of higher kerbs and retaining walls to prevent highway surface water entering properties.

Since those works, extensive survey and investigation work on this challenging site have been carried out and have resulted in this new drainage scheme.

The works will take place on a stretch of St Martin’s Road starting at the ‘St Martin’ residential development at the top of the hill and ending 400 metres downhill, on the high side of the entrance to the Commonwood Manor hotel.

The proposed highway drainage system uses a series of new road gullies to capture water flowing on the road surface. The captured water is then conveyed through a series of new pipes and inspection chambers. The water will then be discharged deep into the ground using soakaways. The soakaways were installed in the carriageway last year.

To minimise local disruption and complete this scheme as soon as possible, the Council will close St Martin’s Road for 8 weeks from 16 February aiming for the work to be completed by 13 April 2019 so that the road will be open in the run up to Easter.

The work is being done for the Council by CORMAC, who will have crews on site 7 days a week, working during all daylight hours.

Diversion signs will be put in place and free parking offered to parents and carers in Riverbank car park to help them get their children to school.

Local Cornwall Councillor for Looe East and Mayor of Looe Armand Toms said: “There is never a good time to close such an important road into the town but it’s also important this work is done so we can improve flood protection. We had a choice between 8 weeks with full closure or 13 weeks with  road closures and traffic lights. The latter would just mean more disruption for longer. “

“The best way to carry out the work on such a sophisticated scheme in as short a space of time as possible is to go for a full road closure. We’ll be doing all we can to let residents know about the expected disruption, as well as speaking to the school, bus companies, local businesses and to adjacent parish councils who might be impacted.”

There will be a few days of site investigation works carried out under traffic light control before 16 February in advance of the work starting on the scheme itself. 

Story posted 17 January 2019