Designing new zones for the De Gavers provincial domain in Harelbeke will start next year

    In recent years, the province has purchased 20 hectares of new land for the expansion of the domain.

    The domain will have three new zones in the coming years. The first zone focuses on nature and environmental education. The historic meersen landscape will be restored and will serve as a ‘wet sponge area’. This type of wet nature is intended to replenish the groundwater in anticipation of the increasingly drier summers. Boardwalks will be installed in the wettest places, so that the area can also be visited in winter.

    In the first zone, about three hectares of forest will also be added, along with an educational orchard. Two container classes will give school groups the opportunity to learn something in the middle of nature. In addition, there will be a loop-shaped trail where families with children can explore independently.

    The Gaverbeek is the second zone to be tackled in 2023. Today it is a straight stretch of stream with artificial banks. To give the water and nature more space, the province is re-meandering the stream. The Flemish Environment Agency, which manages the Gaverbeek, is responsible for the works. The province contributes to the study costs.

    The southernmost zone will be a large controlled flood area that should provide space for the water from the Pluimbeek and the Keibeek at high water levels. In two excavated buffer basins, the streams are allowed to overflow and the water can infiltrate. The wet zone forms a habitat for various plant and animal species.

    Work on the first zone will start in May 2023. Work on Gaverbeek is scheduled to start in March 2023. (BIN, ALG, COR170, GEL, nl)