A £9m refurbishment of Kirkcaldy sea wall is due to begin in spring next year.
Work on the 1.8km concrete wall, which stretches along the Esplanade, will include raising the height of the structure to provide increased protection against flooding and the construction of a rock armour revetment to lessen the impact of the waves crashing against it.
However, proposed viewing areas next to the wall caused some safety concerns for councillors on Fife Council’s Kirkcaldy area committee yesterday (Wednesday).
Councillor Neil Crooks (Labour, Kirkcaldy North), the committee chairman, said: “I’m sure we all look forward to getting this started and completed, especially for everyone working in the High Street.”
But he added: “There is a feeling amongst members of the committee that there is a safety issue relating to the viewing galleries along the wall.”
While concerns were expressed about the potential dangers of raised platforms allowing access on to the wall, there was a desire to ensure there were opportunities to look out over the water and to access the beach.
The contract for the work on the sea wall is expected to be awarded in September, and will be followed by a period of public consultation, allowing views to be expressed on all aspects of the project.
Work is due to start in spring 2013 – after the Links Market – and should be completed by September 2014.
The Kirkcaldy sea wall was originally built in the 1920s to protect the town frontage from flooding.
The Esplanade has suffered periodic flooding since its construction, the most recent notable flooding being in March 2010.
The raising of the crest of the wall to 1.5m above the promenade, an increase of 50cm; upgrading the existing wall and constructing the new rock armour revetment on the foreshore should reduce flooding in the area in the future.