BT Projects, initiator of Tidal Technology Center Grevelingendam (TTC‐GD), has recently chosen Dutch construction firm Van der Straaten to build the world’s first full‐scale onshore tidal research, testing and validation centre. Work starts in April. The contract, valued at €4.1 million, involves the construction of three channels at the Flakkeese Sluice in Grevelingendam, in the southwest of the Netherlands.

When it opens, Tidal Technology Center Grevelingendam (TTC‐GD) will be the first and only location in the world where turbine developers can test, certify and validate their technologies in a large‐scale yet easy‐to‐access real‐world environment. This is because TTC‐GD is effectively located onshore – it forms part of a sea defence barrier – as opposed to offshore, which makes access easier and reduces costs, something the backers hope will push the development of tidal energy worldwide.

Building work

Construction is scheduled to start in April and is expected to be completed by the end of the year. Van der Straaten will build three channels measuring three, six and 10 metres wide respectively, all with a maximum depth of 5.75 metres below sea‐level and a length of 50 metres.
Van der Straaten, which was chosen in a public tendering procedure based on MEAT criteria (Most Economically Advantageous Tender), has been a company in civil engineering, road and hydraulic engineering in the province of Zeeland, in the southwest of the Netherlands, for more than 100 years. Project manager Richard Goetheer said of the project: “All the disciplines our company offers will come into their own perfectly, allowing us to do what we are good at.”

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