Upgrading the existing overhead line between the Massenhoven and Van Eyck high-voltage substations.
Upgrading the backbone of the Belgian grid
The upgrade of the Massenhoven-Van Eyck high-voltage line is key to being able to better transmit more renewable energy via the Belgian grid. This project will also facilitate the import and export of electricity between Belgium and the Netherlands.
In the interest of societyElia's Massenhoven-Van Eyck project is intended to upgrade a key connection on Belgium's 380-kV grid. This voltage level forms the backbone of our grid and can quickly and efficiently transmit large quantities of electricity.
With flows generated by renewable energy sources throughout Belgium set to increase, this project will allow Elia to transmit and disseminate these flows faster and more effectively over its 380-kV grid. It will also facilitate the import and export of electricity between Belgium and the Netherlands, which is vital for Belgium's security of supply.
The existing overhead line between the Massenhoven and Van Eyck high-voltage substations is approximately 92 kilometres long and is located in the provinces of Antwerp and Limburg. Starting at the Massenhoven high-voltage substation (in Zandhoven), the line runs along the Albertkanaal to the Heze (in Geel) and Meerhout high-voltage substations, and then on to the Van Eyck high-voltage substation (in Kinrooi).
The line spans 15 municipalities in total, namely Zandhoven, Grobbendonk, Herentals, Olen, Geel, Laakdal, Meerhout, Ham, Balen, Hechtel-Eksel, Oudsbergen, Peer, Bocholt, Bree and Kinrooi.
EnvironmentElia takes a number of measures to minimise the impact of the work on local residents and the environment:
- Elia restores the site to its original state once work is complete.
- Elia prefers to set up work depots in existing industrial zones or paved areas to limit disruption for the environment and nature.
- Elia promises local residents that they will always be able to access their homes.
- Work is not performed during the night, so no depots or sites are lit up at that time.
- Site traffic uses the shortest, safest and most accessible routes.
- Elia uses gantries when removing or pulling cables close to railways, roads or other key infrastructure with a view to minimising the impact on the surrounding area.
- If normal traffic has to be diverted, the diversions will be agreed with the road authority (the municipality or the Flemish Region) and clearly communicated to local residents.
ScheduleElia's work will comprise two phases:
- Phase 1: In early 2021, Elia will begin replacing the existing 380-kV three-phase transmission line between the Meerhout and Van Eyck high-voltage substations with a new three-phase transmission line with HTLS conductors. Elia will then install a second 380-kV three-phase transmission line with HTLS conductors on the overhead line. This phase will be completed by late 2022.
- Phase 2: From early 2023 onwards, Elia will work on upgrading the existing overhead line between the Massenhoven and Meerhout high-voltage substations. This currently comprises one 150-kV and one 380-kV three-phase transmission line. The existing conductors will be replaced with new 380-kV HTLS conductors. This phase will be completed by late 2024.
22 October 2020
New public consultation for environmental permit
Change request for integrated permit
On 16 October Elia submitted changes to the application of the integrated permit. These changes lead to a more complete file. The scope of the project remains the same: upgrading the Massenhoven-Van Eyck high-voltage line to being able to better transmit more renewable energy via the Belgian grid.
10 August 2020
Public consultation for environmental permit begins
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