Northern Ireland-based McLaughlin & Harvey has been appointed to deliver a £16m flood protection scheme for Stonehaven

McLaughlin & Harvey will carry out the work on behalf of Aberdeenshire Council following a detailed and competitive tender process.

The contract is being run as an “NEC option C target cost contract”, which means financial risks are shared between the client and contractor.

This is meant to ensure the contractor is motivated to carry out work as efficiently as possible, working in close partnership with the council.

Stonehaven’s flood protection scheme is designed to protect homes and businesses which have previously been badly affected by flooding events around the River Carron.

Project Lead and Principal Engineer, Rachel Kennedy, said: “We now have a contractor, a project plan and the money we need to deliver it, so after many years of painstaking work we’re almost ready to start work on the ground.

“We are well aware many people in the town will be delighted to see this progress – flooding is not a distant memory in Stonehaven and it’s hard not to think of it every time it rains heavily.

“The format the contract takes, known as an NEC option C target cost contract, means the financial risk is shared between the Council and the contractor to a pre-agreed proportion – sometimes known as a pain/gain mechanism.

“This should help ensure the project is on budget and on time, though clearly with an undertaking of this size and complexity there can always be unexpected difficulties, but this and the painstaking design work which has been done up to this point will ensure those are kept to a minimum.”

McLaughlin & Harvey’s Civil Engineering Director, Seamus Devlin, added:  “We are pleased to be part of the construction of a flood protection scheme which will provide security to the community in this area.

“To be awarded this prestigious contract is testament to the reputation we’ve built up for delivering high-quality flood schemes across Scotland.”

Chair of Aberdeenshire Council’s Infrastructure Services Committee, Peter Argyle, said: “The council and its contractor are keen to keep the local community informed of progress and to work through any issues as they arise, delivering a flood protection scheme which offers the community security.

“With a project of this size and complexity clearly there may be some inconvenience in the local area while work is undertaken, but everyone will do their utmost to keep this to a minimum and I know a lot of planning has gone in to make sure things go as smoothly as possible.

“Clearly everyone is keen to see this important protection for the town in place at the earliest opportunity, but it has to be done right, within budget and ensuring we take account of the complex requirements across the scheme area.”

Work is now expected to start at the beginning of 2019 and will take 24 months to complete.

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