The development of this local 2.6-hectare business park Weesterveld is situated in the area where the Weersterweg converges with the Berneauweg, in Sint-Gravenvoeren. This is the very first business park in Voeren.
The revision of the regional plan started in 2001. Part of this plan: a SME zone for local businesses. This Particular Plan of Construction (BPA, Bijzonder Plan van Aanleg) was approved in 2007. With today’s new insights, this BPA was thoroughly upgraded to create a sustainable and climate-robust business park.
Non-profitable business park
The main drawback of this business park: it has to compete with the business zone in Visé, barely five kilometres away. The Walloon Region and its intermunicipal corporations largely finance the construction of business parks, making the price of industrial land there considerably lower. However, a survey by the Voeren local authority showed there is indeed a demand for a new business park.
Together with VLAIO (Flemish Innovation & Enterprise Agency), recognition for a non-profitable business park was explored and also obtained. This allows the Weesterveld case to claim the available grants. For now, VLAIO said it was committing to a financial push of 13 percent. Because of the costs associated with the archaeological research that will take place, that percentage may increase in the future.
Where we stand today?
POM Limburg and the municipality of Voeren have entered into a cooperation agreement to realise the development of the site. POM Limburg supports the municipality in several areas by way of an established working group:
- Legal area
- Expertise on recognition as a non-profitable business park
- Expertise on public procurement for works
An application was submitted for the construction of the road and the sewerage system on the Weersterveld. For the execution of those works there is an ongoing tender today.
In parallel, the required archaeological preliminary investigations were underway. These revealed that traces of the late Neolithic (Stone Age) and Middle Bronze Age may be found at the site. Therefore, further excavations will take place in the future.
The update of the Particular Plan of Construction (BPA) was incorporated into a subdivision plan consisting of project zones. The plan imposes specific regulations for each zone. Furthermore, the subdivision plan will be applied for in an environmental permit. A public survey will be initiated as part of those plans. In addition, residents will have the opportunity to provide feedback during an information event.
The site consists of three agricultural plots. Today, all land acquisitions were completed and the municipality of Voeren owns the entire project area.