Brussels Airport unveils new sustainable logistics complex

The new complex will house refrigerated storage spaces and offer direct airside access to K+N, Expeditors and cargo handler WFS.

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After two years of construction work, this week Brussels Airport announced the opening of a new logistics facility covering 50,000 square metres at the west side of Brucargo. This logistics complex will house large refrigerated storage spaces and offer direct airside access to Kuehne+Nagel, Worldwide Flight Services and Expeditors.

The new facility at Brucargo will provide additional first-line facilities for WFS’ handling activities, whilst Kuehne+Nagel is expanding with 30,000 square metres of refrigerated storage space for handling of perishables and pharmaceuticals.

As one of the key airports for the transport of pharmaceuticals, Brussels was chosen by Seattle- based logistics company Expeditors as its European hub to open a new healthcare facility. It will offer full monitoring for pharma shipments and looks to play a key role in the shipment of Covid-19 vaccines and related medical supplies.

Also read: WFS unveils new cargo terminal at Brussels Airport

“Brussels Airport boasts an essential logistics platform for the import and export to and from our country. Over one hundred logistics companies have set up office here, making it the second most important logistics hub in Belgium, after the Port of Antwerp, for international trade and air transport in Europe,” the company said in a press release.

The new building is one of the first stages of a larger master plan, the airport noted, and was designed in line with the ‘airport context’ of adhering to strict rules regarding building height, security and fire safety. The office blocks give a unique touch to the complex, which have been built on piles and appear as though they were hovering over the warehouses.

Brucargo gave details on the sustainability aspect of the construction:

“Sustainability was a key concern throughout the construction of this logistics project, which started in May 2019. Part of the roof surface is laid out as a green roof whilst the entire surface is designed to be fitted out with solar panels in the future. Rain gardens were built to improve rainwater infiltration and rainwater pits were constructed for the reuse of rainwater, driving down the buildings’ use of mains water. The buildings were also equipped with LED lighting and heat pumps. In addition, to improve mobility within the airport grounds and facilitate more sustainable modes of transport for staff, charging stations for electric vehicles were installed in the area. Two additional bus stops and a new bicycle path complete the mobility offer.”

Brussels Airport has spent millions of euros to further strengthen the position of its logistics hub Brucargo, which specialises in the shipment of perishables, pharmaceuticals and e-commerce. Aside from the new facility, it built ultramodern buildings for the storage of valuable goods and an animal care and inspection centre, and renovated several existing buildings. In 2020, it logged 650,000 tonnes of cargo handled at the airport.

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