Added: 13th September 2018
Turfdry’s work constructing new sports pitch facilities for Barratt Homes’ new Kingley Gate housing development near Littlehampton continues to progress well, despite some occasionally challenging conditions brought about by intense periods of heavy rainfall.
The initial earthworks phase has been completed, with the subsoil layer having been constructed according to the computerised 3D design model using a range of GPS-equipped plant. The high quality imported topsoil is now being spread around the site according to the model, which specifies different depths of topsoil for the pitch areas and the surrounding plateaus; this is to provide an optimal balance between the quality of the finished facilities and the project’s overall budget - especially given the deficit of sufficiently high-quality topsoil on the site at the initial handover.
In order to mitigate the minor delays in the project that have come as a consequence of heavy waterlogging on the site, as well as to honour the various other commitments of Turfdry’s busy autumn works schedule, work on the drainage installation has begun in tandem with the topsoiling operations. To facilitate this, careful consideration has been given to the logistics of both the earthworks and drainage operations, and they have been organised to ensure that both components of the work can progress simultaneously, with as little delay or disruption as possible.
As a consequence of the site’s mixed history, and its having been used for a variety of storage and dumping operations throughout the construction of the housing estate, particular care has been given to the subsurface makeup of the land to ensure that no buried detritus interferes with the pitch quality, or the efficacy of the drainage system. To this end, the proposed drainage system was marked out using GPS, and the areas where drains are to be installed have been interrogated with an excavator, with debris and building materials being removed and backfilled with soil.
An additional consequence of the particular makeup of the site is that - despite Turfdry’s best efforts to analyse the makeup of the ground during the design phase - excavations and compaction operations have revealed parts of the site to be made up of inappropriate material for pitch construction; this is primarily the consequence of dumping damp or otherwise inappropriate material on the site throughout the estate’s construction, and results in wet, spongey sections that cannot attain the levels of compaction necessary for a high quality sports surface. These problematic sections of the site have been overcome through excavation of the problematic material, and its replacement with dry, higher quality soil that can meet the compaction demands of a high quality natural turf sports facility.
The drainage system installed uses Turfdry’s unique Hydraway Sportsdrain lateral drains, which will collect surface water from the pitch plateau and feed it to a perforated plastic pipe carrier drain, before outfalling into the broader rain-water sewage system of the housing development. The 50-65mm wide trenches are backfilled with a layer of gravel and a layer of sand prior to the cultivation and seeding works, which will take place once the earthworks on the pitch surrounds have been completed.