/Gabčíkovo, 17. 4. 2020/

First parts of the steel gate´s left wing of the right lock are already delivered to the Gabčíkovo waterworks. The heaviest part – the lower wing – is 22 m long and weights 107 t.


The works on the European project of Upgrade of Gabčíkovo locks go on despite the COVID-19 pandemic emergency state. Ing. Daniel Kvocera, Director General of the water enterprise VODOHOSPODÁRSKA VÝSTAVBA, ŠTÁTNY PODNIK (VV, š. p.),  stated that  the project is strategical for Slovakia and international water transport on the Danube. Mr. Kvocera said the current operation of the Gabčíkovo waterworks is exceptional:

“The continuing works on our project are important – also regarding our obligations to the European Union. Our workers are important for us. In order to protect them we apply higher preventive hygienic measures. Despite coronavirus emergency, I am happy to state that a part of the gate is already in our Gabčíkovo waterworks. The gate will be gradually installed  This is a significant milestone in our 28-years history of the waterworks operation and in the project itself,“ said Mr. Daniel Kvocera and appreciated the cooperation among his company (VV, š. p) as the purchaser and Metrostav a.s., as the general contractor and Dopravoprojekt, a.s. as the construction supervision agency.


The lower gate of the lock is one Europe´s biggest gates. The new gate was produced by the steel works of Metrostav in Horní Počernice. The first part to be installed in Gabčíkovo will be the left wing of the lower gate set up of 8 pieces weighting approximately 500 t.


In order to prevent congestion of the road network due to series of oversized loads, construction workers worked out a couple of time schedules for routes. „The highway D1 was used for the transport of the lightest part of the new gate. Nevertheless, the weight of the single part is still 28,5 t, whereas the total weight of the set is 42 t. The part is 18 m long, 3 m broad and 4,2 m high. To enable the transport of exceptionally heavy loads, we had to use special heavy haul trailers. Loading and unloading were only possible with the biggest cranes. Metrostav and most probably the whole country as well, have never experienced such an extraordinary operation. I wish to express my sincere thanks to the investor, VV, š. p., and its managers, which have always been acting in bright professional manner. Thanks to their cooperation we can work further on,“ stated Mr. Radek Liška, Metrostav´s project manager.


The building site of the Gabčíkovo waterworks is ready and Metrostav can immediately start fitting the huge components. Individual parts will be welded on cranes with carrying capacity of 500 t built up on a special crane base construction which will help fit the gate wing to the hinges.

Dimensions of the gates of both locks of the Gabčíkovo waterworks are approximately 37 x 22 m and they are 2 m thick. Along with the supporting constructions, they weigh almost 1 200 t. The gates are even heavier than the famous gates of the Panama Canal.


Demolition works going on despite restrictions

Along with fitting the gates, demolition works necessary for the reconstruction of the right lock of the Gabčíkovo waterworks will go on. The current precautionary measures against spread of the pandemic COVID-19 have some influence on the course of works. However, the general contractor has the strong intention to meet the deadline agreed for the final completion of upgrade of Gabčíkovo locks: January  2022. “Our Czech contractors for construction works cannot work either at all or just partially. We intend to get builders from other building sites in Slovakia. We are currently looking for the appropriate arrangements. To finish the demolition works is quite essential for all other jobs. We are confident that we will be able to meet the deadlines,“ said Radek Liška.

Injections of subfoundation in the channels of the right lock of Gabčíkovo waterworks have preliminarily been suspended. Workers of the building firm Zakladanie stavieb can only go on injecting after the easement of coronavirus restrictions.

Under strict security measures demolition works on regulatory closing devices, thresholds of lower gates and wells go on. Works on adjustment of provisional gate inflow go on as well.  Corrections of faults found on original concrete-and-steel constructions on guidance grooves for floating bollards are made.


The Project of Upgrade of Gabčíkovo locks is co-financed by the EC funding programme of Connecting Europe Facility granting almost 123 million EUR and by own resources of VODOHOSPODÁRSKA VÝSTAVBA, ŠTÁTNY PODNIK. The contract was signed 14 months ago.



„The author is solely responsible for the information given in the article. The European Union is not liable for any use of information given in the article.“