Port of Oostende, Belgium
January 11, 2019
MHI Vestas Offshore Wind, established at the Port of Oostende since 2013, opens a new office location today in the presence of the Danish ambassador, Karsten Vagn Nielsen, the new mayor of Oostende, Bart Tommelein, and alderman of the port, Charlotte Verkeyn.
“Because we will be servicing no fewer than 244 wind turbines at sea from the Port of Oostende by 2020, we were in urgent need of expansion. This new location offers room for our new employees. Meanwhile, we now have over 100 employees in our Belgian branch,” says Aart Bark, Regional Director, MHI Vestas Belgium.
MHI Vestas Offshore Wind is already an established company in the offshore wind industry at the port facility. The MHI Vestas turbines in current Belgian wind farms are operated by Parkwind: Northwind (72 turbines), Belwind (55 turbines) and Nobelwind (50 turbines). There are 44 wind turbines scheduled to be built in early 2019 at the Norther wind farm and Northwester II is planned for later in 2019, with a further 23 turbines of no less than 9.5 MW. MHI Vestas will monitor and maintain 244 wind turbines of different production capacities from the Port of Oostende by 2020.
Extension of the building
The Port of Oostende has taken care of the full investment of €2 million. The total building has a capacity of 1300 m² office space and an extra 1000 m² of offices. The architect of the building and the traffic development plan is MOP Urban Design. The studies were carried out by COBE (stability) and Istema (techniques). The main contractor is Alheembouw from Oostnieuwkerke with the most important subcontractors: Van Vooren (electricity) and SPIE (HVAC).
“We proactively contribute to the expansion of the offshore wind business in our port. By establishing the needs of the market early on, we can invest in the necessary infrastructure so that the present partners can expand and new companies are attracted. This translates into permanent jobs, making the offshore wind sector even more interwoven in the region,” says Dirk Declerck, CEO of Haven Oostende.
Ships and berths
More people and more buildings also brings more ships. A brand new hotel ship was already deployed in December 2017. The Esvagt Mercator has her home base in the Port of Oostende and is staffed by 36 offshore technicians who stay at sea for a duration of two weeks. In the near future, similar service vessels will be deployed from Oostende. In addition to the hotel ships, there are also crew transfer vessels (CTVs) that take the technicians to sea. In 2013 MHI Vestas started with 1 CTV. In the meantime, 2 CTVs are permanently active. During the summer months, this number increases to 5 CTVs that take technicians to the wind farms. The Port of Oostende has already invested in new berths for these vessels.
MHI Vestas Offshore Wind
MHI Vestas Offshore Wind is a joint venture between Vestas Wind Systems A/S 50% and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) 50%. The company’s focus is to design, manufacture, install and service wind turbines for the offshore wind industry. The company aims to create sustainable value through offshore wind power by driving capital and operating savings and increasing the power output of wind turbines. An innovative force in offshore wind since its inception in 2014, the company is guided by its founding principles of collaboration, trust, technology and commitment. For more information, see mhivestasoffshore.com or follow @MHIVestas on Twitter.
Port of Oostende
The Port of Oostende focuses on continuity, growth and employment within five pillars: Blue Economy, Bulk & Project Cargo, Cruises & Ferries, Circular Industry and the Fisheries sector. These sectors are being further developed on the basis of two foundations: prioritization of safety, health and environment and secondly supporting innovation and development.