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Construction of Swansea tidal scheme delayed

The start of main civils works on the £1bn tidal lagoon project in Swansea Bay has been put back to next autumn.

Project promoter Tidal Lagoon Swansea Bay said the wait for various planning approvals and investment deals meant a start on site was at least a year away.

When the pioneering 240MW project received planning consent from the Department for Energy and Climate Change earlier this summer, the hope was for it to get underway in earnest in spring 2016.

But a spokeswoman said today: “We are nearing the end of the advanced works phase and good progress has been made with our preferred construction partners. Detailed design work has progressed and the construction programme has been integrated. 

“The end of this phase of activity means that we’ll be ready to build once the remaining permissions have been secured and financial close with investors is achieved. The Board of Tidal Lagoon Swansea Bay has concluded that this won’t be possible by year-end, ruling out the start of marine works next spring. 

“A new timetable has therefore been agreed with tier one contractors: targeting financial close next summer. Our aim is to then start the initial civil works on site in autumn 2016 in order that the marine works can start in spring 2017. As a result, target power-on moves to 2021.”

The project promoter this summer named Laing O’Rourke as preferred bidder for a £200M contract to deliver the turbine house and sluice structure for the project and China Harbour Engineering Company as preferred bidder for a £300M marine works contract. Atkins is client engineer.

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