What is it?
Kornwerderzand is a small village on the Afsluitdijk. The Lorentz locks are found close to Kornwerderzand: a system of discharge sluices and a large and small navigation lock. Together with the Stevin locks at Den Oever, they control the water level of the IJsselmeer and, as a result, the hinterland. Kornwerderzand is the location where various of De Nieuwe Afsluitdijk’s ambitions in the field of sustainable energy, ecology, recreation and tourism, and environmental quality converge. One of the ambitions is widening the passage for shipping traffic.
Comprehensive area plan
Now that the State will be reinforcing the Afsluitdijk, regional governments and the business community have seized this opportunity to develop an ‘innovative solution variant’ for the lock at Kornwerderzand. Widening the passage will result in economic benefits for the northern, eastern and central parts of the Netherlands: shipyards, coastal shipping and the fishing sector will all benefit. If we are going to expand the lock complex, we also want to make it more accessible for tourists and recreational users at the same time. All the plans involving Kornwerderzand are therefore combined in an integrated area vision for Kornwerderzand. By combining the work on the lock with the work on the dam, the performance will be cost-effective and the quality will be higher due to coordination and integration of the plans and the work.
The solution from the region
The region has come up with a solution variant that uses the gate in the new storm-surge barrier on the Wadden Sea side, one of the design variants being investigated by Rijkswaterstaat. Further research has shown that this variant from the State did not meet the guidelines set. As a result, the Minister of Infrastructure and the Environment decided in October that, rather than having two smaller navigation locks, a future-proof storm-surge barrier will now be built, a single large floodgate with a width of about 42 metres. With this decision, the Minister has given the region time and space to further specify the regional solution variant and to organise funding for it.
The regional parties believe that a variant in which the entire existing lock complex is replaced is the most efficient solution, given that the current lock complex will have to be replaced in due course. Therefore, the regional solution variant will now be based on the conversion of the navigation canal into a fully-fledged lock with a width of about 25 metres and a length of about 140 metres.
Similarly to the other regional ambitions, the plan for the regional solution variant is being specified in close consultation with the State.