Van Oord to Use New Dike Improvement Method

Van Oord and GMB are about to use innovative dike pins for the first time on a dike improvement project between Hagestein and Opheusden, the Netherlands.

The great advantage of this dike reinforcement technique is that it can be used in places where working space is limited.

The client, Rivierenland Water Board, is embracing this new method for use in the Hagestein-Opheusden Dike Improvement Project.

Dike pins are steel anchor rods encased in cement. They are inserted into the underlying layer of sand and prevent the possibility of the dike collapsing during floods. Installing the pins is an effective way of making dikes safer.

When working space is limited, e.g. by houses and vegetation, the problem can be solved by using this innovation. The dike pins are installed completely inside the existing dike profile, so that it is not necessary to interfere with the crown or the foot of the dike.

During the work, the surrounding area suffers much less disruption than with the traditional installation of sheet piling or soil replenishment, while still being kept safe from flooding.

This innovative method of dike reinforcement is the result of close cooperation between Van Oord, GMB, BAM Speciale Technieken and RoyalHaskoningDHV. The innovation has been further improved on the back of a number of tests and pilot projects.

According to Johan Bakker, Director of Innovation at Rivierenland Water Board: “Innovation succeeds more often than not. That is also the case here. To keep the Netherlands safe and to keep safety affordable, we – in a joint effort – have to pull out all the stops.”

The HOP dike improvement scheme involves reinforcing about 18 km of dike spread over two dike rings, ten work areas and five municipalities. The first and last work areas are 40 km apart on the southern bank of the Lower Rhine and Lek.