The contractors THV Artes Depret – Franki formed a temporary partnership to construct the new lock in Sint-Baafs-Vijve in West-Vlaanderen, Belgium. Becoming part of Europe’s largest inland waterway network called Canal Seine Nord Europe vividly illustrates its importance. Moreover, the 107 kilometers will connect the Seine and Scheldt Rivers and facilitate inland waterway transport.
Being built on the River Leie, the new lock, ordered by De Vlaamse Waterweg, is larger than the old lock and thus suitable for pushed convoys and the expected increase of shipping traffic on the river. Speaking of its size, the new lock will be 16 m wide and can accommodate vessels up to 190 m long and 11.40 m wide. A door in the middle of the lock chamber ensures that smaller vessels can pass the lock more quickly.
Shipping traffic is not interrupted by the construction works as the new lock is being built close to the old lock, enabling the old lock to be in operation as long as possible.
Approaching vessels to the lock are protected by Donut Fenders which are designed with a 100% closed cell polyethylene foam core and a reinforced elastomeric skin. One of their main characteristics is that they float up and down with the fluctuating water levels and rotate when vessels slide along the fender.
ShibataFenderTeam delivered 10 Donut Fenders to equip Sint-Baafs-Vijve which were all manufactured at their production facility in Germany. In other words, the close proximity to the construction site enabled them to provide a timely and economic solution for our client.
The Donut Fenders have a weight of almost 5 ton, a diameter of 2.6 m, height of 4.2 m and they fit a pile diameter of 1270 mm. In order to support their client with the installation of the Donut Fenders, their Belgian Agent CGK Group supervised the installation process. Thanks to their global network and their flexible, efficient approach, they are able to provide direct exchange and local support to their clients.
ShibataFenderTeam wishes De Vlaamse Waterweg a successful last construction period and a smooth operation of their new lock in Sint-Baafs-Vijve.