Opening of the Boulevard Adapted for XXL Cargo

Boulevard des ApprentisThe new Boulevard des Apprentis was opened on Friday, 6th July, in the presence of the project’s industrial and institutional stakeholders. A key stage in the regeneration of the Saint Nazaire industrial and port activity zone, this new 1.2-kilometre-long, 21-metre-wide road link is one part of a broader programme to support the expansion of the industrial and MRE sectors.

In June 2016, Nantes − Saint Nazaire Port, the Local Authorities and the industrial firms in the Saint Nazaire industrial and port activity zone went ahead with the transformation of the Saint Nazaire port facility by committing the investments needed in order to regenerate the Saint Nazaire site. Two years later, a first stage has now been completed with the delivery of this XXL-sized boulevard.

The Saint Nazaire industrial and port activity zone forms the heart of the aeronautical, shipbuilding and ship repair, steel construction and mechanical engineering sectors on the Loire Estuary. Over the past few years, those sectors of activity have seen strong expansion, around the development of companies such as Chantiers de l'Atlantique (ex. STX) or MAN Energy Solutions. The site is also becoming a key element in the emerging sector of marine renewable energy.

A XXL connection
The new boulevard thereby offers an XXL connection between two complementary facilities: the centre for industrial and logistical operations at Montoir de Bretagne (the general cargo and container terminal and the ro-ro terminal), and the Saint Nazaire dock basins with their infrastructures that are suited to handling heavy-lift cargo. A secondary road link, the south access expressway, will subsequently connect this boulevard to the marine renewable energy logistics hub.

Work on movable bridges and locks
The regeneration of the sector also includes the work to upgrade the movable bridges and locks, so as to ensure the reliability of those structures and to deliver secure maritime and road traffic flows. The five-year-long programme of work commenced with the civil engineering refurbishment of the east lock and the renovation of the plate of the upstream gate of the Joubert sluice dock. This first phase of work should be finished by the end of the year.

It may be remembered that the overall Saint Nazaire industrial and port activity zone regeneration project is covered by the 2015-2020 Central Government − Regional Government planning agreement and represents a total investment of 30 M€, financed by Central Government, Pays de la Loire Regional Authority, Loire Atlantique Departmental Authority, Saint Nazaire Urban Area District Authority, Saint Nazaire City Council, Nantes − Saint Nazaire Port and private firms.

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