Thursday, 5 March 2020
Department of Public Expenditure and Reform
Flood Relief Schemes
129. To ask the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform further to Parliamentary Question No. 168 of 1 October 2019, the status of the flood relief scheme (details supplied); the status of the hydrological modelling which was due to be completed before the end of 2019 with feasibility and route selection assessment expected to be completed by early 2020; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [2991/20]
The Office and Public Works (OPW) and Galway County Council are working together on the development of the Gort Lowlands Flood Relief Scheme with Galway County Council acting as the Contracting Authority for the project and funding being provided by the OPW.
The combinations of river water, groundwater, swallow holes and turloughs in the karst Gort Lowlands catchment makes this area ecologically unique on an international level. Owing to the complex nature of the area, Trinity College Dublin (TCD) and Geological Surveys Ireland (GSI) have been contributing to the development of the Scheme.
This project is the first in the country to deal with so many complex hydrological variables over a 270 sq.km. area and it is critically important to ensure that the final flooding solution will be based on the very best data available, that has been analysed and modelled using the most up-to-date and robust criteria available.
Modelling is close to completion and this will feed into the route selection and feasibility assessment which is ongoing and expected to be completed by mid-2020. Full public consultation and engagement with all relevant stakeholders on emerging and preferred proposals are ongoing and will continue in advance of the submission of the scheme for formal statutory approval.