Until yesterday motorists wishing to travel from the courts of justice in the south of the city to northern Antwerp could use Antwerp's legendary Leien to cross the city. The thoroughfare was cut in two last night. Car tunnels are being constructed beneath the otherwise so busy Operaplein. A tram station and a car park are planned too.
Closing the Operaplein is a drastic measure. Residents and commuters have been the target of an information blitz. Both are being seduced with free tram tickets and electric bike trials.
The disruption is likely to be limited today as Whit Sunday is a public holiday. The real test will be on Tuesday, the first day of the working week for most Antwerpners.