NextGen District Antwerp

NextGen District is an 88ha hotspot for circular economy within the Port of Antwerp. With the foundation of the NextGen District, Port of Antwerp-Bruges wants to actively contribute to the circular economy and climate transitions.

Port of Antwerp-Bruges

With a total throughput of 289 million tonnes per year, Port of Antwerp-Bruges is a major hub in global trade; focused on container handling, general cargo traffic and vehicle throughput. It also accommodates the largest integrated chemical cluster in Europe. As a ‘landlord port’ Port of Antwerp-Bruges manages the public land in the Antwerp and Bruges port areas and leases it to companies through concessions. 

The Port of Antwerp-Bruges holds the ambition to become the first global port to harmonize economy, people and climate. They aim to employ their unique position as logistic, maritime and industrial center to take the lead in the transition towards a circular economy 

NextGen District

When General Motors left a large site in the industrial heart of the port, the Port of Antwerp-Bruges seized the opportunity to reserve this precious land for circular industry. As NextGen District is located near the largest integrated petrochemical cluster in Europe, there are ample opportunities for symbiosis with established companies and suppliers. NextGen District will become home to a number of circular pioneers such as:

NextGen Demo 

A two hectare zone within NextGen District is a dedicated innovation hub. In this NextGen Demo zone, short duration concessions ensure flexibility and thus stimulate growth from proof-of-concept or pilot to a commercial level. There is a focus on four domains: Waste-to-X (chemicals/fuels) CCU (Carbon Capture & Utilization), Bio-based technologies, Renewable energy storage and H2-technologies. The NextGen Demo site will allow start and scale-ups to test and demonstrate their innovative technologies at larger scale, as well as take advantage of the growing ecosystem of entrepreneurs. Port of Antwerp-Bruges will take on a role as community builder, supporting these pioneers. 

Power to Hydrogen and TripleW will be the first to companies to become part of the NextGen Demo hub end of 2024.  

  • Power to Hydrogen aims to accelerate the transition to a green hydrogen economy through anion exchange membrane electrolysis. This technology represents a possible solution to reduce the cost of green hydrogen production.  
  • TripleW has developed an industrial process to produce lactic acid from food waste. This lactic acid serves as a feedstock for biodegradable plastics and biochemicals.  

Three other companies – H2SITE (renewable hydrogen production), HSL Technologies (liquid hydrogen transport) and Aquature (clean fuels from liquid waste) – have started the preparations to launch their projects in 2026. A signed letter of intent assures them of support during  this phase. 

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Circular Area DevelopmentIndustrial Symbiosis

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