Major Step Forward for Oxford Flood Scheme
The £120 million Oxford flood alleviation scheme, which will reduce flood risk to homes, businesses, and transport in the surrounding area, has moved a step closer, reports the Environment Agency.
The Oxford project partnership has just announced that it has secured the funding for the scheme, which will include at least 5 hectares of new habitat creation, 7 new bridges and 2.6 kilometers of new flood defenses.
More than £65m in funding has already been committed by Government. A record amount of partnership funding totaling over £55m has now been given by a wide range of partners. Investment has been secured from Oxfordshire Local Enterprise Partnership, Thames Regional Flood and Coastal Committee, Oxfordshire County Council, Oxford City Council, Thames Water Utilities and the University of Oxford.
Joanna Larmour, Project Director at the Environment Agency, said: “This is a huge scheme – one of the biggest the Environment Agency is working on – and when complete it will not only reduce flood risk to homes across Oxford but it will also protect vital infrastructure, enabling the city to keep moving during flooding.”
County Councillor Yvonne Constance said: “The flood relief channel has been a hope for many people for a long time. Now we are at the stage where it has the funding it needs to be made into a reality there will be thousands of homes and businesses protected from the devastating effects of flooding.”
Councillor Susan Brown, Leader of Oxford City Council, said: “HM Treasury approved the outline business case for the scheme in November 2017. This detailed that full funding for the scheme had to be committed before it could move to the next stage. This has now been confirmed, thanks to increases in contributions from the scheme partners.”
According to the EA, they will submit the planning application for the Oxford flood alleviation scheme in March. It will take approximately 3 years to build the scheme, which is designed to work with the natural floodplain west of Oxford.