Smooth and safe traffic

An easily accessible port with safe traffic flow. The various teams at Port of Antwerp-Bruges work hard towards this goal every day. Maintaining and renewing port infrastructure, improving shipping planning, expanding shipping guidance and rolling out digital applications are a few examples of the activities. The focus is not only on nautical aspects. Port of Antwerp-Bruges also exercises its competences on the landside to make the port area optimally accessible, for example by road and rail. In addition to the importance of the logistics chain, stimulating sustainable passenger transport for commuting is a priority.

Efficient shipping guidance and planning

The Vessel Traffic Service (VTS) is responsible for the shipping guidance of seagoing and inland vessels behind the locks. To ensure a smooth, safe and efficient traffic flow, VTS provides information and advice, for example relating to routes, weather conditions and potential risks, to all water-related traffic participants behind the locks.

 

In addition to the shipping guidance, Port of Antwerp-Bruges is committed to transparency and the optimisation of shipping planning. For example, the team of Port Planners ensures the safe, efficient planning and processing of moorings. They take into account the various actors, such as the port, the port facilities and the port users, as effectively as possible.

Autonomous drones for safety enforcement

In Antwerp the port covers an area of more than 120 km² and forms part of Belgium's ‘critical’ infrastructure. The use of drones will make a significant contribution to the general safety in this complex environment. Drones offer a unique perspective from the air and allow the port authorities to manage, inspect and supervise a large area quickly and safely. Using drones will play an increasingly important role in the port of the future. The aim is to develop a network of autonomous drones that can provide a 'live feed' of the various port activities. 

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Renewing Europe Terminal for sustainable growth

To ensure that the largest container vessels can continue to call at the Europa Terminal in Antwerp, Port of Antwerp-Bruges is planning to deepen the quay wall of the Europa Terminal, in dialogue with the terminal operator PSA Antwerp. To this end, the current quay wall will be completely demolished and replaced by a new one. After completion of the works the container terminal will be able to receive ships with a draught of 16 metres

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Digitisation of the radar infrastructure

Radar infrastructure plays an important role in the guidance of shipping traffic. In Antwerp, the radar network will be fully digitised and further expanded. Because of its location in the hinterland and the associated complex calls, the nautical chain operation is of crucial importance for smooth traffic in Antwerp. In recent years, significant investments have been made in the digital interconnection of the chain partners, including more and better data exchange. The twelve current analogue radars will be gradually replaced and seven radar set-up points will also be added. 

 We are preparing our port for the world port of the future where innovation and digitisation are central. This new radar infrastructure will help us manage our port more efficiently and ensure even safer and smoother traffic.

Annick De RidderPort alderwoman
Schepen Annick De Ridder

Verbindingsbrug: the new longest swing bridge in Europe

In early 2022 the 130 meter long rotating centre section of the new Verbindingsbrug left the Victor Buyck Steel Construction workhouse in Wondelgem and was transported on a pontoon to Zeebrugge via the Western Scheldt River. The centre section was removed from the pontoon and put in place in a highly secure navigation operation.

 

With a length of 130 meters and a passage of 55 meters, this moveable bridge over the Verbindingsdok will soon be considered the longest swing bridge in Europe. The total cost of the project amounts to an investment of €34 million by the port authority. The Verbindingsbrug provides better access between the outer and inner port and is also an indispensable link in the (cycling) infrastructure for safe commuting.

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