Today, New Brussels X, the brand new bpost sorting center in Neder-Over-Heembeek, was officially opened by Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Development Cooperation, Digital Agenda, Telecom and Post Alexander De Croo and Mayor of the City of Brussels Philippe Close. At 80,000m², the sorting center is the biggest in the Benelux and the second biggest in Europe. As well as letters for Brussels and Flemish Brabant, New Brussels X will handle all parcels for the whole country.
The new sorting center, which is already fully operational, is a cornerstone of the Vision 2020 strategy launched by bpost in 2015 with the aim of improving the operational efficiency. This strategy is built on three cornerstones: (a) centralizing parcel sorting at the New Brussels X sorting center, (b) organizing last mile delivery around 60 operational mail centers, and (c) continuing the further automation of mail sorting at the five sorting centers.
Doubling of current capacity and major innovations
The eye-catcher at New Brussels X is the brand-new high-tech parcel sorting machine (PSM), which instantly doubles sorting capacity at bpost to 300,000 parcels per day. The PSM is equipped with cutting-edge technology for the postal market. The PSM introduces innovations such as 360° parcel scanning, automatic sorting in the correct containers and large parcel sorting (120/70/60cm) at bpost. Parcels travel around 1km on the PSM’s conveyor on their way to the correct container. New Brussels X is also able to handle 2.4 million letters per day.
Centralizing the handling of all parcels at one sorting center has some major advantages for parcel customers. Online shops can drop their parcels at New Brussels X through to 2am for delivery to the end customer a few hours later.
Expressing his pride, Koen Van Gerven, CEO of bpost, said: “This building is a major achievement for bpost, proportional to our big ambitions. This sorting center is our response to the express train on which e-commerce is arriving in our daily lives and how this has an irreversible impact on the postal industry. The number of parcels we handle continues to increase month on month, so we needed to adapt our infrastructure and processes in an innovative way to be able to continue to guarantee customers high quality and flexibility.”