A pipeline to aid the construction of a new Tesco store in Seaton is now up and running – removing the need for thousands of lorry journeys through the town.
Before construction of the store can start at Harbour Road, Seaton, around 300,000 cubic metres of infill material must be brought to the site to raise the level of the land by two metres so that the new store, petrol station and car park are raised above the flood plain.
However, if Tesco had imported this material by road, it would have created thousands of lorry journeys through local communities and significantly inconvenienced local residents.
Instead, Tesco embarked on an ambitious project to minimise the impact on residents by shipping the infill material in by sea.
Tesco instructed specialist company, Westminster Dredging, to install a pipeline to the site, that is connected to the ship ‘Oranje’, which is moored 1.5km from the coast of Seaton.
Westminster Dredging is part of one of the world’s largest international dredging and marine engineering companies and has worked on numerous high-profile land reclamation projects.
The infill material has been sourced from the licensed dredging site off the coast of South Wales.
The pipeline operation started on 29th March and is expected to continue for another three weeks. The material is transported to the site through the pipe and each load is the equivalent of approximately 1,200 HGVs.
Once the infill material has been delivered to the site, the pipeline will be dismantled.
Tesco regional corporate affairs manager, Juliette Bishop said: "This multi-million pound project is among the most ambitious that Tesco has undertaken. Bringing the infill material in by sea has meant that a process to raise the land that would normally take a number of years can be completed in only a few weeks.
This is the first phase to bring forward this area of regeneration in Seaton, the second phase will start this summer when building work starts on a state-of-the-art store which will be ready to open in time for Christmas."
Local residents and visitors are invited to view the work in progress and speak to a member of the team at a viewing platform on site. The viewing platform is open from 9am-4pm, seven days a week during the infill process.