New lock to provide better access to inland ports

Construction of a new low-water lock on an important canal network near Magdeburg, Germany, will allow goods to be unloaded all year round, as well as generating cost savings and reducing pollution.

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The lock is situated on the Rothensee junction canal, which forms part of the most important inland waterway connection between the Elbe Canal (linking Hamburg [Germany], Dresden [Germany], and the Czech Republic) and the Central Canal (linking the Netherlands, Berlin [Germany], and Poland). This section of canal is also an integral part of the trans-European network of inland waterways.

Work will include the construction of a 215 metre-long lock, along with the requisite bulkhead plate (452 metres in length), a water pumping station, and the upper and lower docking facilities (each of which will be 508 metres long).

All-round improvements

As well as improving links between local canals, the new structure will guarantee ship navigation even when water levels in the Elbe are low. This will mean that goods can be loaded and unloaded at the Magdeburg ports all year round. When completed, the lock will allow larger ships with greater loading capacities than the existing fleet to utilise the waterway.

Being able to support larger ships will also mean it is possible to operate a smaller fleet. This will reduce the number of ships using the local ports and canal network, which will lead to reduced journey and turnaround times. Operational and management cost savings from this change are estimated to reach EUR 5 566 000 by 2025.

In addition, the changing fleet composition will reduce pollution from ship exhaust fumes, saving around 2 150 tonnes of carbon dioxide per year.

About 70 jobs will be created during the project implementation.

Total and EU funding

The project “New construction of the Magdeburg low water lock” has a total eligible budget of EUR 42 019 739, with the EU’s European Regional Development Fund contributing EUR 27 312 830 for the 2007 to 2013 programming period.

Draft date