A joint venture (JV) of DEME and Eiffage Métal has won an engineering, procurement, construction and installation (EPCI) contract worth over €500m covering the foundations for the 480MW Saint-Nazaire offshore windfarm in France.

The JV will design, fabricate and install 80 steel foundations at the windfarm, which is owned by EDF Renewables and Enbridge.

Saint-Nazaire offshore windfarm will be situated between 12km and 20km off the coast of the Guerande peninsula in western France. It is anticipated to generate enough electricity to supply 20% of the Loire-Atlantique department‘s power.

Eiffage Métal general manager Antoine Brésolin said: “Eiffage is very proud to contribute to the first offshore windfarm in France.

“Already involved on this market in North Europe, where Eiffage Métal, through its subsidiary Smulders, has gathered lots of references for offshore windfarms in Belgium, Germany, United Kingdom and the Netherlands, our Group will now develop its know-how in French waters.

“We look forward to working with EDF Renewables and Enbridge to complete this project safely and by integrating its environmental features.”

The design activities for the project have already been initiated, with factory production expected to begin in the middle of next year. By mid-2021, the initial foundations are planned to be installed at the site on a rocky seabed. Installation works are expected to be completed in mid-2022.

DEME French Subsidiaries general manager Jan Vandenbroeck said: “We are honoured to be awarded the first major EPCI foundation contract in France and to contribute to the country’s ambitious energy transition targets.

“The contract highlights our technical expertise in providing innovative solutions for the offshore wind industry. The Saint-Nazaire project will deliver drilled monopiles, a new step forward in the offshore wind industry.”

EDF Renewables currently has four offshore wind projects in France: Dunkirk,  Fécamp, Courseulles and Saint-Nazaire.

Once completed, the windfarms are expected to provide the equivalent of the electricity consumption of more than two million people.