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Quay work continues to progress

Posted Sat 19th July 2008 at 17:26

Essential renovation work on Alderney's commercial quay is now into its 10th week.

Marine engineers Beckett Rankine and constructors Geomarine have spent a large portion of the first two-and-a-half months preparing the groundwork for the 9.5m project.

States engineer Julie Turner said: 'As with most things at the quay, the preparation work is the larger part of the story and the preparatory work seems to have generally worked so far.'

Ms Turner detailed the work currently being undertaken at the Braye Harbour site.

She said: 'The dredging operation to get to the bedrock is now in full swing. The bedrock depth has meant placing the excavator closer to the seabed on a barge and offloading the silt and clays onto the quay deck. Dumpers pick it up from there and dispose of it off-site.

'On the deck, work is focussed on the east berth to allow one of the western berths to operate for shipping.

'The top edge of the existing deck has been cut away and a new concrete edge beam has been poured that will support the new extended deck. Likewise, at the lower level, another concrete beam is under construction to provide extra horizontal support to the new wall.'

Ms Turner also explained the strange noises emanating from the harbour.

She said: 'Apologies to residents for the odd noises heard from the harbour area at strange times. They are generally caused by the barge lumbering into position to suit the tides, daylight and other quay uses.

'The barge is an expensive piece of kit to hire so we need to be sure we get maximum use out of it before sending it back.'

The new quay, which is expected to be built by the end of October 2009, will have storage for concrete blocks, a new passenger waiting room, including customs facilities, and a launching quad for the Royal National Lifeboat Institution.

Renovation work is expected to secure the quay for at least 60 years and result in a longer berth for fuel and cargo vessels and a larger deck area.

The existing quay has many problems, including inadequate mooring security for oil tankers and a hazardous surface for freight movements. Furthermore, water corrosion has weakened its structure and caused extensive damage.

The quay currently accommodates all vessel movements in Alderney, including cargo ships, oil tankers, passenger vessels, fishing boats, yachts and a lifeboat crew.

Two webcams have been positioned to film the project and keep islanders up to date with the latest developments. Log on to www.alderneyquay.info for more.


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