Every newsletter we highlight an excursion, this time it is:

'Where landscape and infrastructure cross borders' a fieldtrip to The Kempen (Belgium)


About the fieldtrip
On behalf of the Flemish Government participants to the IENE Conference are invited to join on a fieldtrip to the Kempen. On this whole day excursion we will stroll around on the ecoduct Kempengrens, the first European ecoduct on the border of 2 countries (The Netherlands and Belgium). This excursion focuses on cooperation and integration of infrastructure on a landscape scale. Both ecologists and engineers will enjoy this excursion. You will get a chance to discuss technical, ecological and management topics with the project team. Not all mitigation measures have the optimum effect and it is important to share lessons learnt!   

Exploring ecoduct The Kempengrens
The ecoduct Kempengrens is an example of partnership in all aspects of a project (and IENE project award winner in 2014!). But also fauna-exit constructions to deal with the barrier effect of reinforced banks of a navigable canal will be visited. Several defragmentation measures on a landscape scale will be shown at the new N19g road, one of the few new road projects (missing links) in Flanders. Tailor made mitigation measures conform the EIA are executed here. This includes a large (500m!) landscape bridge, an ecovalley, adapted culverts, tunnels and fences for amphibians and mammals. And at last a pilot project with a wildlife detection system at a blackspot for wildlife collisions with wild boar will be visited.

About the Kempen
The Kempen is a geographic region across the Flemish-Dutch border. Typically this nutrient poor, sandy area is a small scaled landscape with relicts of heathland, oak/pine forests and fens mixed with meadows and ribbon development. Several roads and canals criss-cross this region. Along these infrastructures a wide variety of mitigation measures are executed that will be visited on this fieldtrip.

Organizing parties
The fieldtrip is organized by the Flemish Government as partner of the IENE conference organizing committee 2018. In Flanders several policy areas work together in the planning, financial and technical support, execution and monitoring of defragmentation projects. All sites visited in this excursion are examples of this cooperation and the partners will be glad to share their experiences with the participants of the fieldtrip and to exchange knowledge.