Antwerp Port Authority decided to renovate the Royers lock as a barge lock

Publication date: 
26 Feb 2018

In the past few weeks the Antwerp Port Authority has received many questions and comments concerning the future of the Royers lock. Below are the results of the intensive consultation on this matter.

Roadwords to improve safety of cycle traffic

Work is currently being carried out on the Royers lock, which as a consequence is closed. This work is necessary to improve the safety of cycle traffic over and around the lock. 

Lock re-opens mid-April 

The lock will be re-opened in mid-April. In order to further guarantee safe cycle traffic over the lock, it will be closed to barges during peak commuter periods, as follows:

  • from 0630 to 0900 hours
  • from 1315 to 1345
  • from 1530 to 1800

These hours reflect the times of shift changes for dock employees and the times of the nearby Maritime Academy. The impact of these closing times will be evaluated after one month in consultation with representatives of the barge sector. 

Renovated as a barge lock

There has also been much speculation in the past few weeks about the future of the lock. We hereby confirm that the Port Authority has decided to renovate the Royers lock as a barge lock. Due to the changed situation at the other lock complexes in the port, it is no longer necessary for seagoing ships to use the Royers lock to reach the southern part of the port; instead they can use the other lock complexes. A traffic census will be held during and after the current work on the lock and there will also be regular consultations with the barge sector, in order to obtain a more accurate picture of the actual use that is made of the lock. The precise configuration of the new lock will then be worked out on the basis of the results. 

Work on the Oosterweel link

The timing of the renovation will be coordinated with the work on the Oosterweel road link. This roadworks project, which is not due to start until 2020 at the earliest, is located close to the Royers lock. Good coordination between the two projects, in consultation with the barge sector, should limit the inconvenience both to road traffic and to barge traffic while also minimising the amount of time that the Royers lock is closed. 

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