Mallow Flood Defence Scheme

 Mallow Scheme

The above photo shows the demountable defences partially in place, viewed from the dry side.

The town of Mallow, County Cork, has a long history of flooding from the River Blackwater, which flows through the town. Other watercourses, which can cause flooding in Mallow are the Hospital Stream, Gooldshill Stream, Bearforest Stream and Spa Glen Stream. The Spa Glen Stream caused the most flooding problems, as it flows through the town centre, mostly beneath the streets in a series of culverts.

Mallow has flooded many times and the Town Park flooded several times a year. Major floods have occurred in 2010, 2009, 2008, 2004, 1998, 1995, 1988, 1980, 1969, 1948, 1875 and 1853. The most severe flood occurred in 1853 when the town bridge was swept away.

The Final Engineering Report was produced in October 2003 with a preferred solution, which would protect against a 1 in 100 year flood event - in other words, a flood of such extent that it has a 1% probability of occurrence in any year. Generally, the Scheme comprises new culverts, walls and embankments, some demountable defences, pumping stations and the lowering of ground at Mallow Bridge.

The Scheme was brought to Public Exhibition in 2005. Advance works were undertaken by Cork County Council with OPW funding in 2005-2006. Afterwards, OPW proceeded with Phase 1 of the project with construction works on Mallow North being completed between 2008 and 2010.

The North phase involves some demountable defences, which are erected by Mallow Town Council/Cork County Council staff during flood events. A Flood Forecasting System has been design by OPW and protocol is in place for the erection of the defences.

The November 2009 flood saw the demountable defences being erected for the first time and proved a resounding success. Numerous properties would previously have flooded to a depth of almost 1m from such a flood event.

The Mallow South and West phase commenced in September 2010 and were completed in 2013.

Costs involved in the establishment of the system were funded by OPW.

Design/Construction Teams

Design Team:

ARUP, consultant engineers

Construction Team advance Works:

McGinty O’Shea Ltd

Construction Team on Mallow North:

Ascon Ltd., Civil Engineers

Construction Team on Mallow South and West:

Bam Civil Ltd