Heylen Warehouses and North Sea Port off to a flying start with their biggest project in Belgium despite lockdown

Published on Fri 12 Jun 2020
Herentals-based logistics real estate developer and investor Heylen Warehouses has commenced construction on its largest project in Belgium to date: Ghent Logistic Campus. This will see the company off to a flying start when the coronavirus measures are relaxed.

With Ghent Logistic Campus, located in the port of Ghent, North Sea Port, Heylen Warehouses is building a logistics site covering 250,000m² and creating 500 additional jobs in the region.

Investing in the future

Despite the coronavirus measures and the accompanying lockdown, Heylen Warehouses is commencing the planned works on its new logistics site: Ghent Logistic Campus. The green light came today with the signing of the concession agreement to develop the large-scale logistics project .

Investing in logistics and e-commerce

With this new location, Heylen Warehouses is investing in the promising future of logistics and e-commerce, in which the importance of a shortened supply chain is increasing all the time. "Speed, certainty and shorter delivery times are more important than ever. We are certainly seeing this now, in this time of Covid-19 in which e-commerce and online shopping have received a huge boost. E-commerce has proven to be an important part of the vital infrastructure. Distance to consumer, immediate availability and the size of product stocks play an important role. Products need to be delivered quickly and efficiently from existing stock”, says Ralph Caspanni, CEO of Heylen Warehouses.

So the need for more storage space 'closer to home' is increasing. "Production and assembly processes are made up of complex chains of suppliers. They each have to deliver their products to their end customers just-in-time and with minimum stocks, on a global scale. The coronavirus has shown us how vulnerable these chains can be when logistics falter. By providing more strategically located storage spaces 'closer to home', we can shorten delivery times and also make ourselves less dependent on the individual links. For this reason, Ghent Logistic Campus was looking for a multi-modal location, somewhere that is easy to reach and where we can guarantee that large volumes of products can be shipped to and from. We found that location in North Sea Port, at the Rieme-Noord business park."

500 additional jobs in the region

The arrival of the new logistics warehouse will also create a lot of job opportunities. "With 14 units, Ghent Logistic Campus provides logistics space as well as offices for various companies. Naturally, the arrival of those companies will also bring employment opportunities: the site has the potential to create about 500 extra jobs in the Ghent region. In a time of crisis and uncertainty like this, we can be proud of that”, says Philippe Deschilder, CEO of Heylen Warehouses.

Accessible multi-modal logistics campus

Located in the Ghent part of North Sea Port, Europe’s eighth-largest port occupying a central position in the North-West of Europe, the Ghent Logistic Campus offers the ideal location for fast and smooth transport, by sea but also by road and rail. The warehouse is located at the intersection of all the major motorways (E17, E40, E34 and R4) and there is a railway connection to Europe and China.

With a location almost in the middle of North Sea Port’s 60 km long cross-border port zone, Ghent Logistic Campus offers unique options for transport by inland waterways and guarantees a fast overseas connection with the United Kingdom as well as the Scandinavian countries.

Commitment to sustainability

The demand for sustainable logistics warehouses is increasing. In order to respond to this, Heylen Warehouses guarantees leading warehouse facilities that are always built with an eye to the future. To this end, its warehouses are equipped with SMART technology and numerous sensors that monitor energy consumption and generate alerts in the event of abnormal consumption, allowing these parameters to be adjusted and optimised in real time. As a result, tenants get their operational costs under control and we achieve a more efficient and sustainable building and, consequently, more sustainable operations. This makes Heylen's buildings state-of-the art and future-proof. In addition, all our buildings are awarded the 'Excellent' BREEAM certificate.

Enhancing e-commerce in North Sea Port

“At North Sea Port, we are keen to further develop e-commerce and sustainable warehousing in the port in partnership with Heylen Warehouses. Even in this time of the coronavirus, we are demonstrating that, with approximately 1,000 hectares of space to invest and extensive multimodal connections by sea and inland, North Sea Port is an attractive place to invest and create hundreds of jobs”, says Daan Schalck, CEO of North Sea Port.

About Heylen Warehouses

Heylen Warehouses develops and invests in high-quality logistics real estate projects, both at home and abroad. We manage and maintain the entire chain, from the start of a development to hiring out the space, with our own people and with our own in-house expertise.
For us, the key question is: what value can we add to our customers' processes? How can we support them with the knowledge and experience we have accumulated in constructing buildings tailored to their requirements? This is also reflected in our own DNA: Heylen Warehouses identifies the right expertise and personal support to deliver the optimum accommodation for your logistics operations.