The Stevin project aims to upgrade the electricity grid between Zomergem and Zeebrugge
Upgrading the power grid in the country's interior
As part of the Stevin project, Elia is upgrading the existing high-voltage grid in the provinces of West and East Flanders. This infrastructure is needed in order to be able to transmit more electricity from the coast to the country's interior. The grid upgrade will be done by installing a new high-voltage overhead line between Zomergem and Zeebrugge. At the same time, 53 kilometres of existing high-voltage overhead lines will be dismantled. To enable the dismantling operation, Elia will lay new underground electric cables totalling 35 kilometres.
In the interest of society
The Stevin project offers a response to four key challenges facing our electricity grid:
- It will make it possible to bring wind power from offshore wind farms to the mainland and transport it throughout the country.
- It is crucial for making the Belgian high-voltage grid more interconnected via a subsea link with the United Kingdom.
- This extension of the 380-kV grid will substantially improve the electricity supply in West Flanders and facilitate further economic development in the strategically important growth area in and around the port of Zeebrugge.
- It will enable additional decentralised power generation units in the coastal region (wind and solar power, and other forms of sustainable energy) to be connected to the grid.
The Stevin project covers a distance of 47 km and crosses eight municipalities in West and East Flanders. Most of the route runs through farmland. The project to upgrade the high-voltage grid between Zomergem and Zeebrugge consists of ten sub-projects. The first eight have to do with the construction of the Stevin route, while the final two involve dismantling the two existing high-voltage lines between Eeklo and Brugge, which will ultimately become redundant.
When Elia starts work in your area, you will receive a letter in advance with more information about any disruptions or diversions during the works. You will also have electricity at all times during the work. You can find more information about the project at www.stevin.be (in Dutch). Should you have any questions, you can send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org or call the toll-free number 0800 11 089 (during business hours).
Elia is implementing a series of measures to minimise the impact of its work on the local area:
- The project’s contractors are using low-noise technologies and do all their work between 7.00 a.m. and 7.00 p.m. This means there is no depot or worksite during the night. Exceptions can only be made in the event of certain highly unusual emergencies.
- Elia uses wood portals or tower cranes when removing or pulling cables close to railways, roads or other key infrastructure with a view to minimising the impact on the surrounding area.
- Site vehicles will use the shortest, safest and most accessible routes.
- Elia will restore land to its original state once work is complete.
- Where possible, Elia will set up its project site depots in existing industrial zones or paved areas to reduce the impact on the local area and the natural environment.
- Elia guarantees that local residents will always be able to access their homes. However, if access routes do need to be closed temporarily, homeowners are notified in good time and, where possible, we set up a diversion.
- 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.
- The project website www.stevin.be (only available in Dutch) is a valuable communication channel while work is ongoing. Letters to local residents and the digital newsletter also provide up-to-date information about the status of the work. You can sign up for the digital newsletter at www.stevin.be.
If you are affected by a project and want to ask us something, please feel free to contact us.
Our team would be happy to help.