Engineers fear stormy weather over the weekend may have opened further “voids” beneath a popular seaside road in Broughty Ferry.
Signs closing Douglas Terrace and its coastal footpath appeared over the weekend with engineers looking to establish the extent of any damage to flood defences, which crumbled in February leaving a sinkhole in the thoroughfare.
There is ongoing concern the weight of a vehicle could cause part of the road to collapse after high winds and strong waves battered the route on Friday and Saturday.
The investigation comes after council officials confirmed work on £15m Broughty Ferry flood defences, delayed by lockdown, will begin on June 1, with construction at the riverside scheduled for at least a year and a half.
The design will be similar to that recently built along Riverside Drive, with a wall constructed along Douglas Terrace.
Road closures have been placed at the west end of Douglas Terrace from the junction with Dundee Road, to Fisher Street at the junction with Fort Street, next to the lifeboat shed.
The closures are also part of the council’s temporary Covid-19 measures to create safer spaces for pedestrians and cyclists along the riverfront.
Liberal Democrat councillor Craig Duncan, said: “There are some concerns about the existing seawall and the potential for voids underneath the congress.
“There might be. We don’t know at the moment and with the weight of a vehicle might cause damage.”
He said flood defence work, traffic mitigation measures and an investigation into the damage would all happen concurrently.
“It’s good news that we are seeing the easing of restrictions to allow these projects to get underway. I would reassure residents that the initial phases of the work are not very labour intensive, making it easier to ensure social distancing.”
Council officials have written to residents in the area to explain the changes and ask them to remove vehicles from the public road into driveways or garages where possible.)
The statement said the council was not required to go through the normal consultation processes due to the public health emergency.
It continued: “These were temporary changes brought about by the current public health crisis, but the closures now also meet and overlap with the revised programme dates for the flood defence work project along the riverfront which will commence and progress over the next 18 months.
“Please note that following the recent storms, the city engineers identified minor damage to isolated sections of the seawall along Douglas Terrace.
To minimise vehicular loading, a decision was taken to install the road closures with immediate effect.”
Alan Ross convener of Dundee City Council’s city development committee said: “This is great news, not just for the people of Broughty Ferry who will see a start made on works which will protect their homes and businesses from flooding, but also for the city’s economy.
“It also marks the first part of our commitment on the ground to providing more opportunities for using more sustainable modes of transport to get about.”
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