The Bascoup workshop is situated in Chapelle-lez-Herlaimont, in the heart of the Charleroi-Nivelles-Mons triangle. It was created in 1912 and is the only workshop in Belgium where points and crossings are mounted. Infrabel wishes to increase production and secure better and safer working conditions for workers on site.

A good number of points and crossings of the Belgian railway network have reached the end of their operational life, which leads to fairly high maintenance costs. Massive renewals will therefore be necessary in the next few years. The existing points and crossings have to be replaced by point switches mounted on concrete sleepers instead of wooden sleepers, which guarantees a longer operational life. Producing such points and crossings requires a more modern and better equipped site. That is why the Bascoup workshop needed to be upgraded, particularly by demolishing several antiquated structures and by building two new industrial halls.

Replacing the points and crossings of our railway network will be done gradually. So the production of point switches resting on wood will not be abandoned completely for the moment. The first new hall in Bascoup will be closed and destined for the mounting of point switches on concrete supports. The second hall is intended for the mounting of point switches on wooden sleepers and will therefore be half-open. The wood needs to be treated with special products that can only be used in an aerated environment. The hall will be closed completely once all point switches are mounted on concrete supports.

Assignment of TUC RAIL

TUC RAIL is entrusted with a comprehensive assignment which consists of the following:

  • Project Management;
  • Preliminary studies and licence applications;
  • Drawing up of tender documents;
  • Administrative procedures (promotion contract);
  • Verification of technical solutions offered;
  • Monitoring of sites;
  • Safety coordination during design and construction phases.

The main works managed by TUC RAIL concern:

  • the construction of a closed hall for the mounting of points and crossings on concrete sleepers;
  • the construction of a half-open hall for the mounting of points and crossings on wooden sleepers;
  • the construction of an administrative building;
  • the creation of storage areas;
  • the renewal of the outer set of tracks.

TUC RAIL solutions for restrictions inherent to this program

A particularity of the Bascoup project consisted in finding an original solution for the financing. TUC RAIL and Infrabel jointly put out to tender a promotion contract. This type of contract consists in entrusting a contractor with pre-financing the project, elaborating technical solutions and executing the works on the basis of tender specifications drawn up by TUC RAIL. During the works, TUC RAIL has to ensure that all requirements are met and has to check the quality of the implemented solutions.

The works for the renewal of the outer set of tracks will be carried out simultaneously in the context of a classic contract. The new halls of the Bascoup workshop are already operational.

Click here to view pictures of the Bascoup workshop.