Getting the job done is what good project management is all about. That’s not just ticking boxes; it’s looking for innovative, inventive and creative ways to bring a project together that’s successful for all parties involved. Some projects requirements are more challenging than others and fall outside the comfort zone of a traditional project management approach. One of those is working on water.
A great example of this is a recent project in Norfolk.
Hudson Bay and Hoveton Broad are connected by a very narrow water channel. Natural England wanted to dredge both waterways and build a new area of fenland.
This was one of the most expensive projects ever undertaken by Natural England, and presented a number of key challenges to contractors:
As experts in water-based construction and land protection, we were able to deliver a solution that used specialised equipment, dedicated geotextile bags and experienced operators in order to deliver this complex project. We provided:
We navigated this equipment through the channel using tree shearers, which caused minimal disruption to the environment and saved considerable time and money over transporting the equipment by land.
Choosing to use pumps to move the dredged material from the water into the geotextile bags allowed us to pump up to 900m3 per day – a non-invasive, faster, more reliable efficient way of working. Most contractors cannot offer this. We deliberately chose to create a bigger geo-wall to make sure that the new land was securely and properly retained. We sourced outsized geotextile bags to help achieve this. This added complexity to the pumping process and to the building process, but ultimately resulted in a robust retaining wall that will last for far longer than a simpler solution.
Our work is carried out around the natural lifecycles of the creatures and plant-life that rely on it for sustenance. We’re always aware of the need to plan and, where necessary, adapt our work to allow for nesting seasons, fish spawning times and other environmental concerns – things that are often not on the radar on a traditional construction project, but will be highlighted by any environmental consultants or lobbying groups involved in the project.
In Hoveton, for example, we dredged the waterways to make them deeper – this is because local swans had eaten all the vegetation from the current riverbed, reducing oxygen levels and threatening other species. By making the waterway deeper, we improved the water quality and the general water habitat.
Land & Water Project Manager Charlie Oakes is immensely proud of this project.
"We are delighted to have been able to offer a timely solution that has enabled Tideway to continue with their project. At Land & Water, we understand the complexities that the river environment can produce and pride ourselves on providing workable and one-stop solutions to these issues."
We thrive on challenging projects that leave others scratching their heads. We have the expertise, resourcefulness and experience to work closely with clients in urban and rural locations to find solutions that meet everyone’s needs – from the commissioning client to the local community. Read more about our successful projects and contact us today to see how we can help you.
Our work with Berkeley Homes required an innovative approach which saw us float an entire 40 tonne bridge up the River Thames