Caladh Mór project wins Irish Concrete Society Award for Excellence

SIAC's Caladh Mór Sheltered Harbour Development project was awarded the Irish Concrete Society 2008 Infrastructural and Overall Award for Excellence with special commendation for sustainability at the Society's annual dinner on Saturday the 28th of March 2009.
The project involved the construction of a new pier and offshore breakwater on Inis Méain, Aran Islands, Co. Galway.

Inis Méain has a population of about 200 with fishing, agriculture and tourism being the main economic activities. The potential to develop these activities was, however, severely restricted due to the lack of safe and reliable berthing facilities on the island. It is in this context that the Caladh Mór Harbour has been developed.

Given the remote and sensitive environment together with the exposure to prevailing marine conditions, the project was logistically challenging and required that all plant and equipment be brought to the island on marine landing craft.

The project was successfully completed to programme in August 2008. All of the concrete required, over 20,000m3, was manufactured on the island with the cement being the only imported material.

The Chairman of the awards committee noted:
"The winning entry could be described as an intervention with a civic sensibility. It demonstrates how in adverse conditions nature's raw materials can be excavated, reconstituted and with the addition of cement, form concrete elements and be re-assembled at the same place in a way that absorbs the forces of nature and provides a welcome place of refuge."