PLANS to protect thousands of Portsmouth homes and businesses from rising sea levels have reached the 'next milestone' as they will be considered for approval next week.
During a planning committee meeting on Wednesday members will discuss several applications to allow work to start on the Southsea sea defences.
These include plans to relocate seafront shelters, memorials and historic lamps in order to built new defences and, in areas, raise the promenade as well as designs for the overall project.
READ MORE: Latest designs for Southsea sea defences
Guy Mason, coastal defences manager at Portsmouth City Council, said: 'We are very pleased to reach this next important milestone for our Southsea Coastal defences.
'A tremendous amount of work has gone into this planning application and we have worked with the public, as well as numerous statutory organisations and committees throughout the process.
'Given a positive outcome at the committee meeting, we are hopeful to start construction at Long Curtain Moat in spring 2020.'
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The new defences will span from Long Curtain Moat to Eastney, a distance of around three miles.
Latest calculations predict they could cost up to £131m.
Recently the city council agreed to pledge £17m to the scheme to allow the Southsea Coastal Scheme to bid for £107m from the Environment Agency.
There had been hopes the Solent Local Enterprise Partnership would be able to add £10m.
And an initial £7m had already been contributed by the council.
Proposals for the sea defences will be discussed at a planning committee meeting on Wednesday, December 4.