World’s largest sea lock almost ready for traffic

This summer, OpenIJ – a consortium of construction companies building the IJmuiden lock – will deliver the largest sea lock in the world to Rijkswaterstaat.

According to the Port of Amsterdam, OpenIJ is working on the final stages of the construction of Zeesluis IJmuiden. After delivery to Rijkswaterstaat, an extensive test phase of the new lock with sea-going ships are scheduled to begin from October.

The final site layout will also be completed in the coming period. The quays at Sluis Zuid, just south of the Lock Operation Centre, and at Zuidersluiseiland and the site layout south of the IJmuiden North Lock will be finished as well.

Final site layout

All the lock platforms of Zeesluis IJmuiden have been asphalted and the final site layout of the public road and the lock platform is being completed.

The platforms will be fitted out with navigation markers, both horizontally (on the lock platforms) and vertically (on the lock chamber wall).

In the coming period, the final road traffic signs will be placed, the paving work, including neat and tidy verges, will be completed.

Completion of the quay at Sluis Zuid

The quay at Sluis Zuid lies just south of the Lock Operation Centre. This quay, which currently consists of vertical sheet piling, will be covered by a horizontal beam in the next few months.

The quay will be used as a storage area for maintenance material for the sea lock and will be the maintenance contractor’s entrance to the Lock Operation Centre.

Testing the lock gates

In the coming period, OpenIJ will be busy testing the lock gates. The inner lock gate (on the canal side) and the outer lock gate (on the seaward side) will be tested in combination with the primary systems, such as the signs and systems for both road and shipping traffic.

On land, this system consists of the traffic control units, barriers and traffic signs. The vessel traffic system consists of the enter and exit signs at the lock. The test team is also busy with testing the secondary systems, such as lighting, fire alarms, fire extinguishing systems, intrusion alarms and access control.

Completion of the quay at Zuidersluiseiland

OpenIJ is building a new quay on the Zuidersluiseiland next to the storehouse of towage company Heida. For this purpose, the Zuidersluiseiland has been expanded and equipped with a quay. This quay will also be used as a car loading/unloading jetty. Work on the quay at the Zuidersluiseiland will be completed this summer.

The layout of the lock platform of the IJmuiden North Lock

The lock platform south of the IJmuiden North Lock is being redesigned. The current pavement will be partially removed to install new paving and a drainage system with metal grating. The lock platforms are used on a 24/7 basis by the IJmuiden boatmen (Vletterlieden) who assist ships with mooring and unmooring in the lock.

Photo: Rijkswaterstaat