Former Opel Antwerp site looking for buyers
The port of Antwerp has announced that the former site of Opel Antwerp is now ready for sale, with 96 hectares of prime manufacturing space
According to port CEO Eddy Bruyninckx, the site – officially named the Churchill Industrial Zone because it lies adjacent to the Churchill Dock – would be most suitable for the metal works or chemicals sector. “This is a unique site,” he said. “It’s not every year that you’re able to put something like this on offer. Even the trimodal connection possibilities are unique.”
Companies have until 15 January to communicate their interest. The port will give preference to a concession agreement with a single user, although an outright sale is not excluded from consideration.
That would involve the port taking a priority right to buy the land back, as happened when General Motors decided to close Opel Antwerp. The port bought the land back last year for €42 million, less than half of GM’s asking price of €90 million.
The site could also be broken up. “Major projects don’t just fall out of the sky, although we do think the time is right,” Bruyninckx said. “We are looking mainly at manufacturing industries. Our figures show that is where the most added value and employment opportunities lie.”
Once project proposals are in, they will be considered by a reconversion committee chaired by industrialist Paul Buysse. The agreement could then be completed “in a matter of months,” Bruyninckx said.
Photo courtesy Gemeentelijk Havenbedrijf Antwerpen
Port of Antwerp
barges entering the port daily
companies in the greater port area
tonnes of freight handled in 2012