Weyts announces €2 billion for improvements to Brussels Ring
Details of works to the Brussels Ring Road have been released, with the addition of lanes, cycles bridges and three new tram lines
Trams to airport
There is a fourth lane planned for the Vilvoorde viaduct, and three new tramlines will be added, as well as 41km of cycling infrastructure and green areas.
The main problems with the RO are the lack of alternatives to using a car and the number lane changes required, which are a major factor in the 1,100 accidents that take place on the road every year. Some 102,000 people a day use the RO, most of which is located in Flanders.
The works include cycle paths, 10 cycle bridges and nine tunnels, for a total cost of €70 million. The new tramlines mean an investment of €500 million, but they will replace some 20,000 cars on the ring every day, Weyts said. The lines – Brussels to Willebroek, Brussels to Brussels Airport and Jette to Brussels Airport – form the new Brabantnet.
“Flemish Brabant is the beating heart of the country, but everyone is standing still,” said Weyts, who was born at still lives in the province. “To move forward will take shovels in the ground of Flemish Brabant.”
If works stay on schedule, they will be completed in four years. By coincidence, the government of Flanders approved a proposal last week to simplify the procedure involved in taking over private property for public projects. Expropriations will be more limited in this case than usual, Weyts promised – “more a question of ground than homes,” he said. He expects about 10 homes to be involved in the expropriation process.
Traffic in Flanders
largest area covered in traffic ever recorded in Belgium in kilometres
time Antwerp drivers spend in gridlock per year in hours
traffic diversions in Flanders per year