The breaking ground ceremony by the Minister of Economic Affairs Maria van der Hoeven and TenneT Director Mel Kroon for the new Bleiswijk high-voltage substation marked the symbolic go-ahead for the construction of a new high-voltage connection right across the Randstad conurbation, which connection is scheduled for development in the next few years. The high-voltage substation is built by order of the regional authorities on the south side of the A12 motorway, creating the necessary scope to realize the future transport hub. As a result, this economically powerful region is given the opportunity to develop its full potential.
Randstad 380-kV project
Through the Randstad 380-kV project, the Ministry of Economic Affairs and TenneT provide for the gradual realization of the necessary high-voltage connections in the Randstad. This concerns the expansion of the grid from the Maasvlakte industrial zone, via Bleiswijk to Beverwijk. The southernmost section of the connection (between Wateringen and Bleiswijk) must be completed before the end 2011, coinciding with the arising need. The northern connection between Bleiswijk and Beverwijk is set for completion in 2012/2013. In total, around 20 of the 80-km long connection of this electricity highway is realized below ground, which is highly innovative on a worldwide scale. New towers of reduced magnetic field intensity called Wintrack will be used for the overhead section. In the years to come, a total of 700 million euros will be invested in the new connection.
Bleiswijk high-voltage substation
Bleiswijk high-voltage substation is set to become the main link between the northern and southern ring of the new 380-kV connection serving the Randstad region. This station links up three major electricity highways. The current substation in Bleiswijk, together with the high-voltage substation near Krimpen aan den IJssel, is now connected to the ring-shaped national high-voltage grid managed by TenneT. This is the first time that a HIS (Hybrid system, or Highly Integrated Switchgear) of this magnitude is built in the Netherlands. This makes the substation a vital link in the Randstad region, in both senses of the word. Hybrid stations are modern stations that are easy to construct and which can be taken into service in the short term. They are compact, offer a long lifespan and are highly reliable, vital properties in a strong region such as the Randstad.
Development of Bleizo
The current high-voltage substation is located in the very heart of the area where the municipalities of Zoetermeer and Lansingerland have envisaged the construction of the future transport hub Bleizo. By virtue of an agreement between TenneT and the Joint Scheme Bleizo on behalf of both municipalities, the high-voltage substation is relocated from the north side to the south side of the A12 motorway. This will provide the planned development of Bleizo with the necessary scope. Bleizo is the development of a new regional transport hub linking up road (car, bus and bicycle) and rail. The Bleizo station will make an important contribution to the accessibility of the southern part of the Randstad conurbation.
The most spectacular feature is the design of a flyover across the motorway for RandstadRail to and from Oosterheem, with an additional stop at Van Tuyllpark. P&R facilities offering around 650 spaces enable a swift transfer from car to public transport. Bleizo further comprises the development of a new regional economic hub in the southern part of the Randstad. This involves high-quality structuring of the station surroundings with innovative companies and facilities, attracting a lot of interest from the market. This includes office, congress and conference facilities (hotels, restaurants etc.), training, educational and research institutes and innovative companies. The plans for the station surroundings are currently subject to further development. Bleizo represents a compact transfer in a region where working, travelling and residing meet.