Permanent repair works have been agreed for the A431 Kelston Road which has been closed because of a landslip.

Works have begun on-site and will be completed - with the road fully opened - by Christmas 2014.

The agreement follows months of exhaustive tests and geological sampling which began immediately the road was closed for safety reasons. The Council has already constructed a path for cyclists and pedestrians in a field adjacent to the land slip.

Following detailed analysis the Council has come up with a permanent solution that will stabilise the land and open the road.

This work is being fast tracked as the Council understands the impact of the landslip on local residents, businesses and commuters. The Council’s priority has always been to achieve a permanent solution which means residents need not suffer such problems in the future.

The extensive repair work falls into four main categories:

  1. Construct the temporary works to enable access for all the equipment and materials
  2. Drill and construct deep concrete piles.
  3. Rebuild the road, improve the drainage and resurface the road.
  4. Remove the equipment and reinstate the adjacent land. (To ensure the road reopens at the earliest opportunity, some ground reinstatement will be programmed for after the road reopens.)

The engineering work is designed to deliver an optimum scheme which is capable of handling the area’s traffic in all weather conditions and be completed in the shortest practical time for a permanent solution. At this stage we expect costs to be in the region of £1.5m-£2m.

Work involved

In order to complete the Kelston Road repair works, the contractor will need to site drilling rigs on both the existing carriageway and in the field adjacent to the land slip. The work includes:

  • Approximately 4,000 tonnes of stone will be needed to construct an access and platform on the sloping ground to enable the drilling to be undertaken
  • Deep concrete piles, up to 600mm in diameter, will be drilled down as far as 15 metres below the existing ground surface to support the new road. Smaller mini piles will also be installed in the field front of the existing wall to support the retaining wall
  • The piles will be made from reinforced concrete with metal cages – they will be constructed off-site and transported soon after so that they can be lowered into place while the concrete is still wet
  • Material taken from the site or used to construct the temporary platforms will be recycled and used on other engineering projects.

What is the background to the problem?

Torrential and prolonged rain at the beginning of the year led to a landslip on the A431 near Kelston Manor. The area had previously suffered from landslips. The road was closed for safety reasons. Inspections by engineers discovered the damage was serious and would require a major repair scheme before the road was safe to re-open.

 

What has been happening since the A431 closed?

The Council’s first priority was safety and that meant a road closure to ensure users were not at risk. Indeed the land only stopped moving in May and so no work could begin until it had stabilised sufficiently. The Council sought a range of options from experts on how to reinstate the road. Alongside that it commissioned geological surveys to get a proper picture of what went wrong and what kind of repairs were required. It also looked at who could best deliver a permanent solution.

What happens next?

The Council’s contractors will begin work in July. The work involves driving pilings into the south side of the road to provide stability. The road will then be repaired. This solution rules out a temporary bypass as an option because the piling rigs will occupy the land that the temporary road would need.

 

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