MHI Vestas Grows Belgian O&M Base in Oostende Port

MHI Vestas Offshore Wind has expanded its presence at the Port of Oostende in Belgium with the opening of a new office location.

MHI Vestas is already an established company in the offshore wind industry at the port facility. The MHI Vestas turbines are operated by Parkwind on Northwind (72 turbines), Belwind (55 turbines) and Nobelwind (50 turbines).

There are 44 wind turbines scheduled to be built in early 2019 at the Norther wind farm, and Northwester II is planned for later in 2019, with a further 23 9.5MW turbines of no less than 9.5MW.

MHI Vestas will monitor and maintain 244 wind turbines of different production capacities from the Port of Oostende by 2020.

“Because we will be servicing no fewer than 244 wind turbines at sea from the Port of Oostende by 2020, we were in urgent need of expansion. This new location offers room for our new employees. Meanwhile, we now have over 100 employees in our Belgian branch,” said Aart Bark, Regional Director, MHI Vestas Belgium.

The Port of Oostende has taken care of the full investment of EUR 2 million, MHI Vestas said. The total building has a capacity of 1,300m² office space and an extra 1,000m² of offices. The architect of the building and the traffic development plan is MOP Urban Design. The studies were carried out by COBE (stability) and Istema (techniques). The main contractor is Alheembouw from Oostnieuwkerke with the most important subcontractors: Van Vooren (electricity) and SPIE (HVAC).

“We proactively contribute to the expansion of the offshore wind business in our port. By establishing the needs of the market early on, we can invest in the necessary infrastructure so that the present partners can expand and new companies are attracted. This translates into permanent jobs, making the offshore wind sector even more interwoven in the region,” said Dirk Declerck, CEO of Haven Oostende.

The Esvagt Mercator has her home base in the Port of Oostende and is staffed by 36 offshore technicians who stay at sea for a duration of two weeks. In the near future, similar service vessels will be deployed from Oostende. In addition to the hotel ships, there are also crew transfer vessels (CTVs) that take the technicians to sea. In 2013, MHI Vestas started with one CTV. Now, two CTVs are permanently active. During the summer months, this number increases to five CTVs that take technicians to the wind farms. The Port of Oostende has already invested in new berths for these vessels.

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