What we do

Challenge

The Deurganckdock is situated on the left bank of the River Scheldt of the Port of Antwerp and was constructed because of increasing container traffic and a lack of quay walls. The dock is of crucial importance for the port, enabling it to maintain its role as an efficient hub for international commerce. Approximately 6 million TEU can be handled every year. The Deurganckdock has an open connection to the River Scheldt and is the largest tidal dock in the world, at 2,600 metres long and 450 metres wide. At low tide, the facility still has a water depth of 17 m.

  • 5.5 million m³
    Excavating
  • 3.1 million m³
    Backfilling & compacting
  • 2 x 2,600 m
    Pumping
  • 1.1 million m³
    Concrete
  • 55 million kg
    Reinforcing steel

Solution

The construction was divided into two major phases:

  • Concrete and earthworks for the quay walls
  • Dredging works (separate contract)

Our project scope was extensive and included:

  • Execution of the stability analysis, safety analysis…
  • Pumping activities
  • Dry earthworks: excavation and backfilling
  • Construction of base and ascending armoured concrete walls
  • Installation of soil protection and bank protection
  • Construction of railway tracks and temporary dykes

We built the quay walls in the dry by means of pumping and return pumping. The depth of the construction pit was -17 m TAW in relation to a water level of approximately +6 m in the surrounding reclaimed areas and of +3 m TAW in the existing polders. To this end, depth wells were placed until they reached the clay soil at a depth varying between -39 m TAW and -25 m TAW and the water was withdrawn at a depth of more than 40 m.

After we had installed the drainage, the construction pit was excavated by means of dry earthmoving equipment. Sand was reused for backfilling and various applications, while other soil was temporarily piled up to be discharged to the Doeldock. As soon as we had the construction pit excavated and two rows of sheet piles had been rammed, the construction of the semi-massive quay wall could commence.

First we concreted the base (width 24 m to 28 m – height 3 m to 5 m) and then the ascending walls. In the meantime the rear of the quay wall was replenished with sand in layers of 30 cm. The quay wall equipment (fenders, bollards, ladders, drainage, bollard recesses, cable channels …) was then fixed onto the ridge rib.

Finally, after a fibred open stone asphalt mattress had been installed at the toe of the quay wall and over a width of 28 m, the construction pit could be inundated and we could start the dredging works.

At the same time, several infrastructural works were going on such as the construction of four railway tracks for the shunting stations.

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