Thursday, May 30, 2019

News: Investigative work begins on Forge Island flood defence scheme

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Investigative work has started on the multimillion pound flood defence works that are key to enabling the new leisure development in Rotherham town centre.

Muse Developments was chosen as the Council's preferred partner for its site at Forge Island with a proposal that includes a cinema, food and drink outlets and a hotel. The leisure facilities will be set within an attractive public space and will include a new pedestrian bridge connecting to the rest of the town centre.

Plans have been approved for Rotherham Council's flood defence scheme which inlcudes 3.75 metre high retaining walls and a new flood gate. A terraced amphitheatre and improved canal path are set to enhance the new waterside destination.

Initial works will see site investigations undertaken by Sirius Geotechnical ahead of the flood defence work being carried out. Works are expected to take around eight weeks.

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The cinema development will be built on a podium to lift the area out of the flood plain, with a stepped amphitheatre beside Rotherham Lock. A wall will be added along the route of the old court buildings with extensive public realm improvements comprising hard and soft landscaping, resurfaced footways and a stepped amphitheatre beside Rotherham Lock. Floodgates will also be added at Bridge Street and Main Street.

The Forge Island Flood Defence works have a total project cost of £4.1m and the flood defence wall and adjoining public realm are currently out to tender, with a partner to be chosen in July.

Cllr. Denise Lelliott, Cabinet Member for Jobs and the Local Economy at Rotherham Council, said: "Rotherham is Yorkshire's fastest growing economy and we know residents are keen to see the town centre developed to befit a town of this status. Forge Island will act as a catalyst for the wider regeneration of the rest of the town centre, and the burgeoning population of students, residents and workers, retaining this market into the evenings and weekends."

A draft timeline has Muse and the Council working towards a planning application for the leisure scheme being submitted in 2019 after agreements over the lease are made. Work is set to begin later in 2019 with the practical completion of the cinema and the first two food and beverage units pencilled in for October 2020.

Forge Island website

Images: Google Maps

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