The surge in December 2013 saw 260 homes and businesses flooded in Hull, with hundreds more affected in towns and villages along the coast and estuary.
The wall, which will stand up to 6ft high, and will be in sections over a nine-mile stretch from St Andrews Dock to Victoria Dock estate in the city, is designed to give a ‘one in 200 year’ level of protection.
Project manager Helen Tattersdale, from the Environment Agency, told the meeting that they had consulted widely with residents, businesses and other stakeholders and had responded to people living on Victoria Dock, by replacing ramps with floodgates.
There was just one objector, the businessman and St Andrews Dock owner John Levison, who was concerned a “quick fix” temporary solution, using 800 kilo blocks, would create a weak point in the defences.
But councillors were assured they would withstand both vandalism and a flood.
The plans now go to the Secretary of State for final approval.
Ms Tattersdale said: “We are really pleased that Hull City Council planning committee has approved the Humber Hull Frontages scheme.
“With today being the fifth anniversary of the tidal surge, this news is very much welcomed.
“It is great news for the city and its residents. The £42 million investment will help better protect more than 100,000 homes.
“The plans will now go to the Secretary of State for the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government, who it is hoped will approve the scheme in the coming weeks.
“We hope to be able to start construction work in January.”