Work to regenerate part of North Tyneside’s coastline has picked up a prestigious civil engineering award.
Whitley Bay Central Promenade Coastal Protection Works was among the winners at the Robert Stephenson Awards, organised by the Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE).
It was the winner in the Medium Project Award for projects with a value between £1m and £5m.
Judges praised the scheme for its design, high-quality construction and collaborative partnership working.
Mayor Norma Redfearn said: “I am delighted that we have received yet another award for our work to revitalise the coast.
“The Central Lower Promenade scheme is a fantastic example of local authorities working together to share experience, resources and expertise to successfully carry out a really complex and challenging piece of work.
“The end result is that nearby homes and businesses are protected from flood risk and the whole area has been completely transformed and looks amazing. We listened to residents before coming up with the final design and it is somewhere we can all be proud of and a place that families enjoy visiting.”
The project, which was carried out in partnership with Hartlepool Council, which has previously completed similar coastal promenade schemes to a high standard, involved strengthening and safeguarding sea defences by rebuilding the structure, as well as a number of public realm improvements.
Tony Hanson, Hartlepool Borough Council’s assistant director (environment and neighbourhood services), said: “Hartlepool Borough Council is very proud to have assisted North Tyneside Council in the delivery of the seafront regeneration works, and we are delighted that the quality of the design and the subsequent construction work has been recognised with this award.”
The project was funded jointly by the council and its partners Northumbrian Water and the Environment Agency and the work was carried out by contractor Hall Construction.
The works were designed to instigate a major regeneration of the frontage and improve the protection provided to offer robust defences against current and future coastal conditions, whilst returning the promenade back to the asset that it was for the local residents.
Kyle Sutcliffe, the lead judge of the awards, said: “This complex scheme, carried out under the physical constraints of a tidal, marine environment, coupled with existing key infrastructure, required excellent planning and innovative construction solutions to overcome the site conditions and constraints, and successfully win back public support for the project following intense opposition to a previous iteration of the scheme.
“Demonstrating the benefits of collaboration between two local authorities, as well as other key stakeholders, consideration of reduced whole life costs, and sensitivity to the local heritage of the scheme, while bringing replacement features up to date with modern standards through engagement with the public, this challenging scheme was delivered safely, efficiently and on programme.”