The Royal Southern Yacht Club has, in the Solent, one of the world’s finest sailing areas on its doorstep and is frequently host to world class events. Construction of the Prince Philip Yacht Haven was the culmination of a long-held ambition to create facilities to match. It now offers a network of walk ashore pontoons, providing berths for 70 motor and sailing boats at all states of the tides, including a disabled berth complete with personnel hoist.
A 150m long sheet piled wall with concrete capping beams enabled the project. This required 400 sheet piles of varying lengths, up to 20m. These were transported by boat, together with the necessary piling equipment, to overcome the issues of restricted road access. A further ten tubular piles also arrived by sea.
Dredging was carried out to remove 1200m³ of contaminated silts from the seabed, which were remediated on site before being reused as fill material to raise the level of the car park. This was subsequently reconstructed and surfaced and completed with hard and soft landscaping.
Several quay walls were also replaced, a new slipway built to launch Optimists and other dinghies, and a 3T boat hoist was dismantled, refurbished off-site and reinstated.
The majority of works were carried out afloat to limit the impact on residents and businesses, with land deliveries restricted to those that could not practically be made by sea. Similarly, the piling techniques selected were chosen to minimise the effects of the construction work, with noise and vibration levels being closely monitored.
The yacht club remained in use throughout the works and this was managed by establishing exclusion zones both on land and on water, marked with appropriate signage.
Harmony with the environment was an important ambition and integrated features included a living wall for invertebrates. Measures were incorporated to take account of possible sea level rises, while minimising the effect of flooding on adjacent land.
The project won Silver at the National Considerate Constructors Awards.