The infrastructure project optimises the connection between the outer and inner port in Zeebrugge and guarantees safer local commuting. The moveable swing bridge is the longest in Europe, with a length of 130 metres, a passage width of 55 metres and a bicycle lane 4 metres wide. The total cost picture for the investment was approximately 34 million euros.
Inauguration of Verbindingsbrug ('Connecting Bridge')
On Sunday 22 May 2022, the official inauguration of the Verbindingsbrug took place at the Verbindingsdok in Zeebrugge. For this occasion, Port of Antwerp-Bruges invited local residents and employees of Zeebrugge to cycle over the new bridge together for the first time.
The way to a smooth connection
The Verbindingsbrug between Jozef Verschaveweg and Koffieweg promotes the accessibility of large ocean-going vessels to the western rear port. The bridge consists of two lanes for traffic with a separate two-way cycle lane. An environmental permit was submitted for a new stretch of cycle lane along Jozef Verschaveweg. Implementation was to begin in late 2022. The total Design, Build and Maintain project was carried out by the contractor combination of Artes Depret, Artes Roegiers, Victor Buyck Steel Construction and BESIX Unitec (then Agidens). In January 2022, the entry of the swing bridge took place via the Western Scheldt river on a sea pontoon.
To the other side in good health
The official inauguration of the Verbindingsbrug took place in the presence of Dirk De fauw, Mayor of the city of Bruges and vice-chairman of the Board of Directors of Port of Antwerp-Bruges, and Rob Smeets, Chief Operations Officer at Port of Antwerp-Bruges. Along with local residents, staff members and other friends of the port, they cycled from one side of the bridge to the other, and then enjoyed a summer treat together on Verschaveweg.