Case Study - Waterwegen en Zeekanall NV - Schelle Belle on the River Schelde, Antwerp


Courtesy of

Architect: Johann van den Noort

Timing: 2010

The Problem

Antwerp is located on the River Schelde, a major tidal river which feeds into the North Sea. At points of very high water and tidal surge from the North Sea, the populated areas in the immediate hinterland are often at flood risk where there are entry points to the river through the dykes.

A small community in Schellebelle sits down river from the main town of Antwerp. The town is split across both the left and right banks and a vital communication link is provided by a ferry which runs all day across the river bringing both sides of this community together.

The Solution

As the ferry is such a vital point of communication it was important to protect this asset and so two barriers were installed, one to protect the ferry and the other to protect the slip way where small boats are launched. A passive system was required, which would not require personnel to raise the barrier.

The Self Closing Flood Barrier was specified as being the optimal solution for this location and the client’s requirements. It was vital that access to the slipway was not compromised under normal conditions, whilst the brief was to protect the community from flooding.

Two Self Closing Flood Barriers were commissioned:

  • 5 m wide x 1.5m high
  • 3 m wide x 1.5m high

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