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Work has begun at the Oosterweel Junction in Noordkasteel: comple ... (Antwerp)

Work has begun at the Oosterweel Junction in Noordkasteel: comple … (Antwerp)

Antwerp

After Nordcastle in the port of Antwerp, the construction of the Oosterweel node began. In 2030, this entry-exit complex will connect the Scheldt Tunnel and the Canal Tunnels.

Patrick Van de Berry

Flemish Mobility and Public Works Minister Lydia Peters (Open Vld) undertook a double mission in Antwerp on Monday. In addition to commencing work on the future Oosterweel Junction, the Royers lock has also been dredged into the ground. The lock is extended and expanded.

This is what an Oosterweel node should look like in 2030. Node construction began on Monday. © Lantis

The Oosterweel junction is an essential part of the Oosterweel connection. In 2030, the node will connect the Scheldt Tunnel to the Channel Tunnels. This should ensure that traffic can travel smoothly from Linkeroever to the northern part of the R1 and vice versa.

The knot will sink into the landscape. The lanes will be located at a height of up to 29 meters below the visual field. “This knot is important for mobility and at the same time ensures that the environment, near Nordkastel, becomes greener,” says Lydia Peters, who symbolically removed the first pebble from the ground. That and many other gold cobblestones were later.

Cobbled from an old Royers lock.

Cobbled from an old Royers lock. © BELGA

Limited traffic disruption

To reduce the impact on the environment, the Oosterweel knot is compressed and partially covered. The space that will be made available for this purpose in Ringpark Noordkasteel will be used in the future.

At the moment, sanitation works are being carried out mainly around the future Oosterweel Junction. This will disturb traffic near Noordkasteel. Motorists will soon be required to drive in one lane in both directions.

In the first months of next year, a number of trees will be cut down and temporary roads will begin. Immediately after that, a transform for Oosterweelsteenweg will be generated. Once the road is completed, the traffic disturbance will be limited.

second oldest lock

Another great plaza in north Antwerp is Royers lock. He also started working there on Monday. The lock, which connects the docks to the Albert Canal, has been out of service for some time and is now being converted into a modern inland freight lock.

This is what the Royers lock should look like soon.

This is what the Royers lock should look like soon. © rr

The Royers Lock dates back to 1907 and is the oldest in Antwerp after the Kattendijk Lock. Expansion and extension are necessary to bring the larger inland ships into the Albert Canal. Like building the Oosterweel node, this project is critical to achieving a paradigm shift by 2030,” explains Lydia Peters.

The Royers lock will be extended from 180 to 230 metres, currently. In width it goes from 22 to 36 meters. The renovation and expansion of the lock will cost 288 million euros. Most of this money comes from the Flemish government and the Antwerp Port Authority. The refurbished lock should be ready in 2027.

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