Skibbereen Flood Relief Scheme

RPS was appointed by Cork County Council in February 2011 to undertake and engineering and environmental assessment to develop a flood relief scheme to manage tidal and fluvial flood risk from the River Ilen and its tributaries in the market town of Skibbereen. 

The flood relief scheme commenced construction in June 2016 and is due to be completed in early 2019.

Key details

Project name

Skibbereen Flood Relief Scheme


Cork County Council


Cork, Ireland

Services provided

  • Hydrological & Hydraulic Assessment
  • Flood Risk Assessment
  • Structural Design
  • River Engineering
  • Environmental Impact Assessment
  • Public Consultation
  • Detailed Engineering Design
  • Construction Supervision
  • Contract Administration
  • Consents
  • Project Management
  • Design Safety Coordination


Skibbereen has suffered considerably from a long history of flooding; most significantly two major events in 2009. During this event over 120 residential properties and more than 70 businesses, schools, care centres, public buildings and sporting facilities were flooded.

This project required tidal and fluvial flood prevention work on the River Ilen and on three tributaries flowing through Skibbereen – the Caol, Assolas and Glencurragh.

Numerous technical challenges faced the RPS team:

  • Hydraulic modelling was required to determine design flood levels.
  • Geotechnical conditions provided engineering challenges
  • Construction in close proximity to existing buildings
  • Stakeholder engagement with businesses, property owners and statutory bodies



Flooding map of Skibbereen County Cork


RPS is responsible for the planning, design, environmental assessment and project delivery of all aspects of this project on a phased basis.  

Following a comprehensive hydro-logical and hydraulic modelling, environmental and engineering assessment a flood relief scheme which includes flood walls, embankments, culverts, minor river regrading works, storm water pumping stations was recommended.  

Upon completion, the Flood Relief Scheme will deliver for Cork County Council a 200 year flood prevention scheme. Providing protection for more than 300 homes and business in Skibbereen and the surrounding areas.

Project statistics

Kilometers of flood walls
Kilometers of embankments
Storm-water pumping stations
Property owners affected

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