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Mechelen - Zennegat

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In the context of the Sigmaplan the National Water Authorities (W&Z) is constructing a range of flood planes along the tidal rivers to reduce the risk of flooding in urban areas. The Zennegat contract at Battel is part of the Sigmaplan. The area involved is known as the mouth of the River Dijle, where the Rivers Dijle, Zenne and Nete merge in the River Rupel. The scope of the contract is to create a 150-acre flood plane to reduce the tidal impact.

As a result the River Dijle will get a bigger area with controlled flooding capacity , resulting in a reduced risk of flooding in both the adjacent area and the wider region. At the same time rare wetlands, so characteristic for this area, will flourish again.

As of now, each flood tide a reduced quantity of water from the River Dijle will now flow through the lock at the Zennegat. At ebb tide the lock will discharge the water back into the river. The artificial tidal movements will slowly create gullies, creeks and wetlands, an ideal habitat for rare species. Moreover, fish can continue to swim through the lock.

During extreme weather conditions the area will be allowed to flood in a controlled matter. When water levels rise to a set level, the water will flow into the Zennegat, using the overflow dike.

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This overflow is the former Dijle dike, lowered and reinforced to allow water to flow across.

Because the Zennegat is able to store a large quantity of water, urban area will be safeguarded from floodings.

It is predicted, that the Zennegat storage area will be used several times per annum. After each flooding the lock will discharge the water into the River Dijle in a controlled matter.

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