In May 2024, the Flemish Agency for Roads and Traffic (AWV) will start preparatory works for a total renovation of the Beveren Tunnel (R2). The tunnel is outdated and in urgent need of renovation. Consortium TM Bever, consisting of contractors BESIX, BESIX Infra, BESIX Unitec, STADSBADER, STADSBADER CONTRACTORS and Equans, was appointed by AWV to manage the renovation.
“In Flanders, we have a historical maintenance backlog on our bridges and tunnels. During my term in office, I have worked on a 2020-2030 action plan to structurally eliminate this in the coming years, and we are allocating unprecedentedly large sums for this. Specifically, for the Beveren Tunnel, we are talking about 125 million euros. It involves both structural renovations, as well as adapting the tunnel technics. The road surface and lighting will be adapted, and the appearance of the tunnel mouths will be modernized. We are also preparing the tunnel for the climate and energy challenges of the future with the installation of a water treatment plant and a solar park that will provide half of the power capacity,” said Minister of Mobility and Public Works Lydia Peeters.
Contractor consortium appointed, environmental permit obtained
On 10 Nov. 2023, the Flemish government gave the green light to proceed with the project. Meanwhile, AWV was able to officially appoint the consortium TM Bever and the environmental permit was obtained on 22 Dec. 2023. This means the renovation can officially start.
“The consortium TM Bever, consisting of BESIX, BESIX Infra, BESIX Unitec, STADSBADER, STADSBADER CONTRACTORS and Equans, is particularly proud to have been selected for the execution design and renovation of the Beveren Tunnel, as well as the realization, operation and maintenance for a period of three years of a water treatment plant and solar park. Within the consortium, BESIX and STADSBADER CONTRACTORS are responsible for the civil works, BESIX Infra and STADSBADER for the road works and BESIX Unitec and Equans for the electromechanical works. We look forward to developing this project together as full partners. Our combined experience and expertise strengthen our ambition to deliver this important link in the Antwerp port area successfully, on time and in a safe manner to our client Agentschap Wegen en Verkeer, whom we would therefore like to thank for their trust,” said Koen De Mey, project manager at TM Bever.
TM Bever is currently drawing up a detailed schedule and making the necessary preparations. If all goes according to plan, works on the bypass road will start in May 2024. The ambition is to start the actual renovation from July 2024.
Participation with port companies
The Beveren Tunnel is located in the middle of the port of Antwerp. Port companies in the immediate and wider surroundings will be affected by the works. Together with Voka – Chamber of Commerce Antwerp-Waasland, Alfaport-Voka and the companies directly affected, a number of participation rounds were held. We looked at how the disruption could be minimized for all parties involved. TM Bever will take this into account when working out the detailed plans.
Photo courtesy of AWV