Plan Incline de Ronquieres, Braine-Le-Comte

4.2
#32 of 247 in Things to do in Hainaut Province
Landmark · Tourist Spot
The Ronquières Inclined Plane is a Belgian canal inclined plane on the Brussels-Charleroi Canal in the province of Hainaut in Wallonia that opened in April 1968 after a six-year construction period. It is located in the municipality of Braine-le-Comte, and takes its name from the nearby village of Ronquières.The purpose of the construction was to reduce the delays imposed by the 14 locks (already reduced from 16 in the 19th century) which had hitherto been needed for the canal to follow the local topography.DescriptionThe Ronquières Inclined Plane has a length of 1432m and lifts boats through 67.73m vertically. It consists of two large caissons mounted on rails. Each caisson measures 91m long by 12m wide and has a water depth between 3and. It can carry one boat of 1,350 tonnes or many smaller boats within the same limits.Each caisson has a 5,200-tonne counterweight running in the trough below the rails, which permits the caisson to be moved independently of the other. Each caisson is pulled by 8 cables wound by winches located at the top end of the inclined plane. Each cable is 1480m long.Each caisson can be moved between the two canal levels at a speed of 1.2m/s, taking about 22 minutes.It takes 50 minutes in total to pass through the 1800m of the entire structure, including the raised canal bridge at the top end.In popular culture The film Brussels by Night (1983) takes place (in part) at the inclined plane of Ronquières.
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  • Interesting to see how boats travelling in the Canal du Centre can be lifted of 73 metres through an inclined surface of 1,5 kilometers. Very educational  more »
  • We were very pleased to find this engineering masterpiece functioning as we had been told it was closed for repairs. So we chose to visit it rather than take our boat through. After Mooring in the.....  more »
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