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‘Unexpected ground conditions’ delay Outer Harbour work

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By Andrew Revill
‘Unexpected ground conditions’ delay Outer Harbour work
Picture by John Lyle

Friday, May 14


The much-talked about improvements to the pontoons in Rothesay’s outer harbour hit a snag this week when ground conditions were found to be unsuitable to sink new piles into.

Argyll and Bute Council said this week that the final costs and the new timescale for completion will depend on what solution can be found to the problem.

Dredging work was completed before huge metal piles were brought in and work looked to be proceeding smoothly.

Work commenced around mid-February to deepen the outer harbour and sink new piles for the new pontoons. Work was expected to take around 13 weeks – weather dependent.

However, just this week the four piles that looked to be sited were lifted out again, leaving the issue the talk of the steamie around town.

We asked Argyll and Bute Council if bedrock had been hit underneath and if that this was the reason for the work being delayed.

A spokesperson said: “We remain committed to delivering the improvements to Rothesay Outer Harbour Berth Pontoons. We are exploring all options and have plans in place to resolve these challenges.

“Unexpected ground conditions were experienced during the piling operation.

“A site information package was provided at tender stage for this design and build contract.

“Ground information was available from previous test bores and previous piling records, which found no rock above 30 metres.

“The tender value of the works is £553,000. The final costs, and timescale, will be dependent on the agreed solution.”

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