Defense Infrastructure Organization, an operating arm of the UK’s MoD, has awarded Boskalis Westminster with a £31 million worth Portsmouth Harbor dredging contract.
Boskalis will dredge the approach channel, inner harbor area and berth pocket, making these deep and wide enough for the new Queen Elizabeth Class aircraft carriers.
DIO project manager Paul Simmonds said: “DIO has worked closely with our Royal Navy customers to ensure this work will be carried out in the most cost-effective way, taking into account the local marine environment, without impacting on the existing operations at HMNB Portsmouth.
“Along with the £51 million jetty upgrade works we announced earlier this year, provision of high-voltage power for the ships when berthed, installation of navigational aids within the channel and the design and production of QEC-specific gangways, this contract forms part of a £100 million investment to transform Portsmouth Harbor into a state-of-the-art home for HMS Queen Elizabeth and HMS Prince of Wales.”
Around 3 million cubic meters of clay, sand and gravel will be removed from the harbor. Dredging works are planned to start in late autumn, using trailing suction hopper dredgers and backhoe dredgers, and will be carried out to ensure the work meets stringent environmental requirements.
The dredging work is due to be complete by summer 2016.