Coastal plan: Planning decision should be delayed

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Perhaps you will allow me to add some brief notes to my letter, (News Guardian, June 18). These include suggestions of alternatives to a new sea wall on the beach side of the existing wall.

The 30-degree slope is the maximum.

To allow the new wall to be built, the slope has to be about 22 degrees.

The new wall runs parallel to the upper promenade for most of its length and therefore has to be 15 metres from the seaward edge of the upper promenade. The drop from the upper prom to the top of the wall is 5.9 metres.

The ‘grassy slope’ is created using earth with layers of porous plastic sheeting (geotextiles).

The provision for drainage of any storm water has not been described, but saturated soil is heavy and the amount indicated surely puts a heavy loading on what is beneath the current foundations, in addition to that of the weight due to the wall itself and the necessary excavations to accommodate its varying base dimensions.

The 2011 Scott-Wilson report includes five options that do not require a new wall, and which allow the lower promenade to be retained.

Not all of these can impose unacceptable loading and there must be a saving in cost by not building a new wall. None of them reduce the size of the foreshore.

It is these options I had in mind when I suggested, in my objection to the proposed design, that the planning decision should be delayed to allow an adequate consultation on alternative options.

Robin Smith

Whitley Bay