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Historical dates of "Canal du Centre"
25 March, 1803
Napoleon decides to build the Charleroi-Brussels canal.

Startup of work under the direction of J.B. Vifquain.

September 22, 1832
Inauguration of the canal by Theux De Meylandt.

Proposal for a widening of the canal.

December 20, 1851
A law envisages 1 000 000 of france for work of widening.

The Minister of public construction A. Beernaert receives a delegation of the area of the Center which claims the construction of a canal.

The Minister of public construction Labour Mr. Sainctelette envisages a budget for the canal of the Center and four hydraulic elevators.

End of work.

June 4, 1888
The king Léopold II inaugurates the first elevator in Louvière.

Long debates on the need to build the three other elevators.

Startup of the 4 elevators of the canal of the Center.

Accesses of the canal to the barges of 300 T.

Proposal for a setting to 1350 T of the canal over all its length.

March 1962
Beginning of work of setting with 1350 T of the canal Charleroi - Brussels.

April 1968
End of work.

- JP. Gailliez creates the Company of the Center in order to protect the site, its elevators, the bridges, etc.
- Signing of a contract which envisages the construction of the new funicular elevator of Strépy-Thieu.

Summer 1990
The lock of connection between the old canal (300t) and the new one (2000t), downstream from the elevator No 4, is brought into service.

The complete maintenance in functioning order and the restoration of the hydraulic elevators are decided.

November 1992
The R.Collignon minister classifies the whole of the site of the canal of the Center.

The Company of the canal of the Center accommodates 40 000 visitors per annum.

April 1997
The site of the canal of the Center is proposed with UNESCO for the classification of this one like world heritage.

December 1998
The site of the canal of the Center and its 4 hydraulic elevators, are classified "heritage of Humanity" by UNESCO.

*Basic information was provided by the Directorate-General of the Hydraulic Ways.
Last update on 2008-02-22