In December 2016, Causeway Coast & Glens Borough Council started to investigate the potential and need for the development of a Regional Trail Centre within Garvagh Forest; producing a Macro Trail Design Report, and a summary report outlining the demand for trails / off-road cycling facilities within the growing mountain biking community and industry within Northern Ireland.
Doran Consulting were appointed in May 2017 as Project Manager, Civil and Structural Engineer, Principle Designer and Site Supervisor; with a brief to progress the scheme through design, planning, production of NEC3 Engineering & Construction Contract and associated works information, contractor procurement, and site supervision.
Euro Services Contracts Ltd. were appointed Principle Contractor in November 2018 with a scope to construct approximately 10km of new mountain bike trails and 4km of multi-use trail upgrade works. The project also included the construction of a new car park on site to facilitate the increased volume of forest visitors due to the new trail network.
The new facility provides a range of walking, cycling, and mountain bike trails for varied levels of experience; comprising a 4.7km red trail, 2.8km blue trail, 1.3km green trail, a 1.3km skills loop, and three reaches of upgraded tracks for use as multi-use trails.
The trails opened officially in July 2019 with positive endorsement from the Council which outlined the investment in infrastructure, health and the wider community; from Sport NI which highlighted the combinations of terrain for everyone from casual cyclists and extreme sportspersons to all ability walking trails; and from Forest Service NI which noted the provision of great and readily accessible opportunities to enjoy the outdoor environment for both local people and tourists.
Doran Consulting Assistant Project Manager Nicola McAlynn will provide an overview of the project development from concept through to construction, highlighting the key design issues, stakeholder engagement and public consultations. Euro Services Contracts Ltd Project Engineer Mark Rogers will provide an overview of some of the construction challenges faced and explain how these where managed during the construction phase.
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