Stephenson Street flood scheme

Closed 18 Oct 2020

Opened 7 Sep 2020

Overview

Natural Resources Wales (NRW) has appointed engineering consultants Arup to develop a new flood defence scheme for Liswerry, Newport.

The strategic objective of the scheme is to reduce flood risk for the nearby communities and businesses. In 2019 we submitted a business case to secure funding for the scheme and were successful.

Arup have investigated various options in the area and have developed a proposal to provide better flood protection for the area.

We have had extensive engagement with many of the local businesses who will be directly impacted by the construction of the scheme before reaching this point and their collaborative input has helped to shape the proposals.

Before we apply for planning permission for the scheme, we are running a public consultation to allow people to find out more about the proposals and provide feedback.

Flood risk in Liswerry, Newport

Map showing properties at risk of flooding

Map showing properties at risk of flooding with and without the proposed defences

Homes and businesses in Liswerry are vulnerable to flooding from the River Usk during periods of heavy rainfall and high tides. Leisure amenities and infrastructure such as the A48, Newport International Sports Village, Newport Stadium and Dragon Park are also at risk.

There is an existing flood bund along the River Usk between Stephenson Street and Corporation Road, but this is old and no longer fit for purpose.

Many of the businesses in the industrial estate which runs alongside the river already experience small scale flooding from low points along the river bank – most notably during Storm Dennis in February 2020.

Without intervention, we estimate that a flood could overtop the existing bund and cause significant damage to homes and businesses in the area in the future.

The industrial estate is a key contributor to Newport’s employment and economy. A large-scale flood in this area could have a disastrous impact on the local economy and community.

The cost of a significant flood affecting the area is estimated at £230m.
 

Proposals for new scheme

The existing flood bund stretches 1,350m along the eastern embankment of the River Usk.

The proposals recommend raising parts of the existing earth embankment. In other areas, new flood walls will be constructed to raise the defence to the required level.  

A new flood gate is also proposed for Corporation Road, along with a new stretch of highway to improve access to the industrial estate when the flood gate is closed.

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PDF image detailling the locations of the proposed enhancements.

Improvements to riverbank defences

  • A 240m stretch of the existing bund through Coronation Park will be raised.
  • A 590m stretch of the existing bund to the south of Coronation Park will be raised and upgraded with a new sheet pile wall.
  • A 640m stretch of new concrete wall through the Felnex industrial estate.
  • Minor localised ground raising of the Stephenson Street highway to maintain the required defence level, as well we two other areas of localised raising of the top of the river bank further to the north.


Installation of new flood gate

  • A new flood gate will be installed across Corporation Road where it passes beneath the railway bridge to be closed ahead of any forecasted major flood events. 
  • A new 450m long stretch of highway will connect the current dead-end of Corporation Road to the Felnex Industrial Estate allowing traffic to exit Corporation Road when the flood gate is closed.
  • Two new short lengths of concrete flood wall in private industrial land in the south of the scheme.


Standard of flood protection and climate change

The proposals would increase flood protection to a one in 200-year flood event standard (this refers to a significant event which has a 0.5% chance of occurring in one year or a 63.3% chance of occuring in 200 years). This is in line with the Severn Estuary Flood Risk Management Strategy.

The proposals have been developed with climate change in mind, accounting for sea level rise and the predicted increased in rainfall over the next 50 years. We estimate that over 1,100 homes and 1,000 businesses would benefit from reduced flood risk as a result of the scheme, taking into account future climate change predictions.


Landscaping and public space enhancements

The existing flood bund is a public footpath and also forms path of the iconic Wales Coast Path. NRW is responsible for managing and promoting the Wales Coast Path and understands the value it brings.

The proposals will require a very minor realignment of the Wales Coast Path in some areas to allow for the raising of the existing bund and the installation of a new sheet pile flood wall.

As the proposals develop, we will consider how we can improve viewpoints out into the River Usk from the path to avoid spoiling the experience for walkers.

We will also consider what other wider benefits the scheme could deliver. The installation of new seating areas, information boards, viewing points as well as better access to Coronation Park and the adjacent Transporter Bridge for pedestrians are the type of features that could be considered for this area.

Image showing how landscaping works could look in the Coronation Park area
Image showing how landscaping works would look around Coronation Park 

Environmental considerations

The River Usk at this location is a Special Area of Conservation (SAC) and Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) and extends from the river to the crest of the embankment. Parts of the embankment are also Sites of Importance to Nature Conservation (SINC) for their habitats.

Shad, a species of fish, are a feature of the SAC and are sensitive to vibration.

Historical records also show a number of protected species in the area – including schedule one birds, otters, bats and barn owls. Surveys have also identified potential habitats for water vole, dormouse, badger and great-crested newt.

Extensive species-specific surveys within a study area have confirmed that these are not likely to be found or breeding within the affected works area.

Construction of the scheme would aim to minimise the impact on any sensitive species and ensure there is no permanent loss to protected habitats.
 

More information

Read our frequently asked questions about the scheme.

If you wish to receive future updates about the project as our plans develop please register your interest by emailing: stephensonstreet@naturalresources.wales

Why We Are Consulting

The purpose of this consultation is to introduce people to our proposals for a new flood defence scheme in the Lliswerry area of Newport, and to gather feedback before we apply for planning permission.

We have already consulted extensively with the businesses and industry in the industrial estate who will be directly affected by the construction work. Their collaborative feedback has helped to shape our current proposals.

Many of the residential homes who will benefit from the scheme will not be directly affected by the construction, but it’s important they still have the opportunity to feed back.

We are particularly keen to hear from you if your property will benefit from the scheme, or if you are frequent user of Coronation Park or the Wales Coast path in this area.

The consultation will run from 7th September – 18th October.

What Happens Next

After the public consultation has closed, we will consider all the responses we receive before submitting a pre-planning application later this year.

The current project timescales would then see a formal planning submission in early 2021, with construction work potentially beginning in spring 2021.

These dates are a rough indication and subject to change as the plans progress.

Areas

  • Liswerry
  • Newport

Audiences

  • Flooding
  • Llifogydd
  • English

Interests

  • Flooding
  • Llifogydd