Network Rail has awarded the contract for construction of the first phase of the Dawlish sea wall to BAM Nuttall.
The new contract is part of a major project to increase resilience of the “vital rail artery to the South West, which communities, businesses and visitors to this popular region depend on for connecting with the rest of the UK.”
Work starts at the end of May, following years of detailed studies, designs and collaborations between world leading marine, coastal and railway engineering experts. The sea wall will aim to protect the railway and the town from extreme weather, waves and predicted rising sea levels, for generations to come.
Network Rail say the local community will also “benefit from improvements to the promenade, keeping clear views of the coast – a feature that the area is famous for, and widening and making safer.” The upgrade is expected to take around nine months to complete, with work stopping during the peak summer season to minimise disruption on tourism in the area.
David Lovell, Network Rail senior programme manager for the Dawlish sea wall project, said: “We are delighted to have awarded the contract to BAM Nuttall and we look forward to working with them on delivering this vital upgrade that will protect the rail artery to the south west for the next 100 years. Our plans have been drawn up by world leading engineers and it will provide greater protection to the railway and town from rising sea levels and extreme weather. Together with BAM Nuttall we will continue to update the community with how our work is progressing.”
Huw Jones, rail divisional director at BAM Nuttall, said: “We have a long association working at Dawlish, and successfully delivered emergency recovery of the railway during 2014. We’re proud to have been awarded this project to help secure this vital piece of the UK railway, for the community to rely on, over many years to come.”