NOISE and vibrations caused by construction of a York flood wall may be so severe that local residents need to leave their homes during working hours, it has emerged.

The Environment Agency’s £5 million scheme to protect almost 150 homes in Clementhorpe from flooding by the Ouse may also mean Terry Avenue having to shut for up to a year, with traffic diverted via Butcher Terrace.

News of the disruption emerged at a public consultation exhibition held by the agency earlier this week.

The flood wall, which is just one part of a wider revised scheme for the whole area,is set to be situated very close to Waterfront House - an apartment block in Terry Avenue.

Engineers may need to pile as deep as seven metres into the ground to prevent floodwater seeping under the wall.

Residents in the apartment block were warned at the exhibition that a ‘construction noise assessment’s’ draft finding suggests that ‘adverse impacts which are not capable of effective mitigation will occur.’

The agency said: “This could mean that some residents would need relocating during working hours.”

An agency spokesman told The Press yesterday that the ground investigations currently underway in the area were being done to confirm the scale of piling required. “As such, at this stage we do not know the exact length of time the piling process will take,” he said.

“This will be dependent on the depths and length required. Once this is known we will be able to confirm the period of timing required to complete the works and also review noise levels.

“We are currently working with our contractor to identify mitigation measures. If residents are required to leave their properties, this would be during daylight hours and facilities will be put in place.”

He said the agency would continue to work closely with its contractors and City of York Council to fully understand the implications of construction and how these could be managed effectively.

“The work will only be carried out during daylight hours and may be subject to conditions set by City of York Council as part of planning,”he said.

“We will be keeping residents informed as and when we have further information on the matter.”

Residents at the exhibition welcomed news that the work finally looked set to start, more than three years after properties in Clementhorpe were inundated by severe flooding from the Ouse in December 2015.

David Carter, who lives nearby in Dukes Wharf, said:”I think it’s excellent, because it’s going to keep people safe and dry.”

Cllr Andrew Waller, City of York Council’s environment executive member, welcomed the progress being made with the scheme, saying there had been some concern about the length of time being taken to get on with it since the floods of 2015.

However, he said the usual timescale for such a complex projects had been compressed and it was essential the agency had a scheme that was effective in preventing further flooding of the area.

Ward councillor Johnny Hayes said the time taken to build the defences had caused some frustration, and was fortunate that the Ouse had not flooded severely again since 2015, or homes could have been flooded once more while people waited for the scheme to come into operation.