Different public and private partners are working together on the development of the Ghent business park '”Tech Lane Ghent”, formerly Eiland Zwijnaarde. The 35 hectare park will be the home basis for companies that are specialized in knowledge economy, transport, waterfront logistics and distribution. The start of the internal infrastructure works herald the next step in this ambitious project.
Tech Lane Ghent, a sustainable business park
An area of 35 hectares in the south of Ghent will be developed in the coming years as a sustainable business park. Located in a strategic location along the E40, companies and employees of the business park will have a direct connection to the Scheldt Canal and a direct access to the R4.
The park offers space for knowledge companies from start-up phase to international production units. International water-related, smart and innovative companies, representing the logistics of tomorrow, are also attracted. To facilitate their operations,an industrial waterfront development with quays along the Scheldt canal, is foreseen on the western side of the business park.
The forward-looking knowledge companies will house in a green campus environment where “co-creation, living lab and sharing of common infrastructure” will be central. Besides the new industrial business park, a space for nature and for cycling and hikers is created along the old tide arm of the Scheldt.
Start of infrastructure work
In 2016, the search for the contractor consortium started which would realize the construction of the main infrastructure and the establishment of the lakeshore south of E40. The contractor group Verhelst Aannemingen SA was appointed for the works.
"We are pleased to announce this important step in the further development of the business", says Mathias De Clercq, Chairman of the Board of Directors of SA Eiland Zwijnaarde.
"After the construction of the R4 and the associated access roads through the Roads and Traffic Agency of the Flemish government it is our turn to realize the work. We ensure the continued opening of the different lots of the business park. First, we create a bypass to the opening of the lots to the south and north of E40. In addition, we put a way to unlock the land between Scheldt and R4 " said Chris Danckaerts, Acting Chief Executive of Waterwegen en Zeekanaal NV (W&Z : Waterways and Sea Channel NV).
Together with the contractor group a detailed planning and phasing of the works is set up. The major part of the work has a period of 220 days to be realized by the contractor.
" Simultaneously with the works that will ensure the opening of the different lots, we focus on our lakeshore areas. This in analogy to the initiative that W&Z has already taken for the part of the lakeshore on their area. This is all done in close consultation with the utility companies and the Roads and Traffic Agency of the Flemish government who will realize, on our demand, an additional underpass under E40, "says Mathias De Clercq, Chairman of the Board of Directors of SA Eiland Zwijnaarde.
Timing and impact of the works
In early March the go-ahead is given for the infrastructure works.
Given the location of the site, little annoyance is to be expected during the works; the use of the bike path along E40 and R4 (between Merelbeke and Zwijnaarde, towards Merelbeke) is guaranteed at all times.
Partners van het project
Developer of the areas south of the E40 is the sa Eiland Zwijnaarde consisting of:
Sogent (Ghent Urban Development Company)
POM (Provincial Development Company) and
PMV (Flemish investment company).
W&Z is responsible for the development of the lands north of E40.
The project is supported by the Flemish government (Agentschap Ondernemen en Innoveren & Agentschap Wegen en Verkeer - Enterprise and Innovation Agency and Roads and Traffic Agency). Also the Province of East Flanders and the city of of Ghent are partners of the project.