WHAT WE DO BALLAST NEDAM INFRA PROJECTS BLANKENBURG CONNECTION ROTTERDAM

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BALLAST NEDAM INFRA PROJECTS

Connection is literally and figuratively at the heart of our company

The world holds Dutch infrastructure in high regard. ‘At Ballast Nedam Infra Projects, we spend our days working on that infrastructure, from harbour expansions and construction of bridges to the construction of tunnels and widening of roads. We do very diverse work, from preliminary design to long-term maintenance. That diversity makes it interesting for us’, says Sander Lefevre, Board member and Executive Director Infrastructure.

Similar to the projects, people are different and have various skills: from the workforce on site to the project boards. Infra Projects comprises about 130 employees. When we need additional people or skills for large projects, we approach our other infrastructure groups and partners.

Heading in the right direction

Infra Projects and its many qualified employees are headed in the right direction, due in part to the efforts and ambitions of the Turkish parent company Rönesans. Lefevre is proud of its employees, for they are passionate and enthusiastic about our profession.

Connecting on all levels

One of the central values within the Infra Projects team is ‘connecting’. We do not just connect boards of directors; especially omn the work floor our people connect to each other, our partners, suppliers and other stakeholders. We do the work together, because we can only break new ground as a team.

Infrastructure

Our Infrastructure division includes the business units Infra Projects (large projects and public-private partnerships), Road Specialties (for example asphalt projects, from large road expansions to roundabouts), PMC Specialties (for example parking structures and overpasses) and Renewables (on- and offshore wind and solar parks). There is significant knowledge, expertise and equipment within the business units, available for every project.

‘Our people are extremely enthusiastic about their job. Their drive and passion are inspiring.’
SANDER LEFEVRE BOARD MEMBER AND EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR INFRASTRUCTURE

Beyond the usual: A9 Gaasperdammerweg

‘An example of going off the beaten track is the project A9 Gaasperdammerweg, where we reconstruct and expand the highway. The updated National Tunnel Standard (‘Landelijke Tunnelstandaard’) was implemented from the start of the project. Our client Rijkswaterstaat (Dutch Department of Public Works) commends our proactive approach from our role in IXAS (a consortium consisting of four companies). We dare to think creatively about content and process. The project plans are surprising and well thought out. Those other approaches arise because everyone in the consortium can bring forth their ideas. If the idea is good, we integrate it. That is how we add value in our changing world. We notice clients and partners feel attracted to these Ballast Nedam values, values which allow us to appreciate the expertise of others’, adds Lefevre. ‘If we all do what we are best at, we can combine our efforts to deliver complex projects with optimal results. In short: we are not your average infrastructure company, we have positioned ourselves as an entrepreneurial, solution-focused partner. That appeals to both clients and partners in the value chain.’

Creative minds

‘Next to connecting and creating unique solutions, we feel the need to know the question behind the question. And then we act, we do not wait until someone comes up with the solution for us.’ Lefevre states: ‘The willingness to understand the mind and needs of others is necessary to collaborate successfully.’ Lefevre does not see that as an extra investment of time, but of creativity. ‘If we look at the employees within the Infra Projects business unit, we see people who like to work within a structure, as well as people who are always looking for different solutions, searching for innovations. We stimulate that diversity; we need both the doers and the dreamers to keep our innovative engine running.’

Enduring relationship with stakeholders: Blankenburg connection

We are currently constructing one of the biggest infrastructure projects, the Blankenburg connection. This is a crucial connection between the northern and southern parts of the Rotterdam City Region. It connects the A20 near Vlaardingen with the A15 in the port district and will improve the accessibility and economy of the region. The project requires many years of dedication and a healthy relationship with the client. The commitment and relationship last beyond the preparation and construction, as Ballast Nedam takes responsibility for the maintenance of the project for 20 years after completion.

Photo: Rijkswaterstaat

‘As we serve as a connector within the project, we have established a consortium with complementary partners. Understanding one another’s needs and clear communication are essential; between the parties and divisions and across the phases of the project. If an infrastructure project takes five years, every phase has a different focus: from permitting to preparation and construction. We structure our organisation to deal with these changes. The board of directors is closely involved; we communicate continuously and are open to new ideas and entrepreneurship. That is how we keep control over projects like these. An important tool is BIM: our 3D Building Information Model that allows different disciplines to collaborate on a construction project. We are BIM experts and connect the mode to the work floor, providing everyone involved with a clear picture of the desired result.’

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Sander Lefevre Ballast Nedam Infra Projects

As Board member and Executive Director Infrastructure of Ballast Nedam, I have been responsible for all infrastructure activities of the company since 2016. Our technical know-how and the wide range of skills of our employees allow us to develop creative and thorough solutions that deliver on the growing and changing need for infrastructure solutions. We are an active contributor to the accessibility of the Netherlands.