The town of Enniscorthy, located on the banks of the River Slaney, has a long history of flooding. Extreme floods have occurred in 1924, 1947, 1965, 2000 and more recently in 2015. Flooding has resulted in inundation of properties and roads in the town and represents a risk to the health and safety of its inhabitants, causing property damage and traffic disruption and adversely affecting commercial activity in the town and its environs.
The Office of Public Works (OPW), in conjunction with Wexford County Council, undertook a study of the flooding problem, following which a preliminary design for the Enniscorthy Flood Defence Scheme was exhibited for public consultation in 2009. In response to feedback from the public, this was further improved and went on public display again in 2012.
The Flood Defence Scheme combines a number of measures to prevent flooding in the town. These include river channel widening, river deepening, bridge relocation, and the construction of extensive glass panelled flood walls through the town.
The proposed construction works will cover a 3.5km stretch of the River Slaney, extending from 1.5km upstream of Enniscorthy Bridge to 2km downstream. The main elements of the project include:
- Construction of flood defence walls on both banks, upstream of Enniscorthy Bridge, through the town, finishing just south of the Promenade.
- River channel widening and deepening
- In partnership with Irish Rail improving the hydraulic capacity at the railway bridge.
- Deepening of the riverbed beneath the Old Enniscorthy Bridge.
- Construction of a new road bridge over the River Slaney and railway line, located to the south of Enniscorthy.
- Removal of the existing Seamus Rafter Bridge.
- Construction of a new pedestrian bridge in the town centre.
Scheme costs are estimated at between €40M and €45M.
A public Display event was held in Enniscorthy during June and July of 2018. Details of the Public Display can be seen here.
A video has been prepared for the 2018 public display. This video shows flooding that occurred in 2015 and shows a computer generated 3D fly through of the proposed works. This video can be seen below.