Usine Akers à Seraing - Control Room S - Urbex Belgium

Today we explore an old factory in Seraing, specialized in the production of rolling mill rolls. These were mainly intended for the industry in the Liège area. The building is dated 1901. Formerly the property of Cockerill, it would have passed through the hands of different owners, including Usinor or Ohio Steel Belgium. In 1998, this branch of production was acquired by Åkers, which became the majority shareholder.

The history of Åkers is long and fascinating. This company was founded in 1580 by the King of Sweden Karl IX. Its first foundry was located in Åkers Styckebruk in Sweden, the town that gives its name to the company. The company was then specialized in the construction of cannons and artillery pieces. Over time, the firm made its way and grew. It was bought by a German in 1772 who began to acquire new forges, workshops, blast furnaces and mines.

Beyond the manufacture of firearms, the company also tackles in 1806 the molding of industrial cylinders. It still evolves in the 80s, by splitting its various activities into several companies, on the one hand the manufacture of ammunition on the other the steel part. The company then extends to more than fifty countries, including Belgium.

It is in this context that the factory that interests us in this article is taken over by Åkers, a company that will then become the world leader in this field. The factory produced at that time up to 7000 tons of cylinders per year and was in close collaboration with 2 other sites in France. The plant's activity collapsed around 2015 with the global steel crisis, weakened by foreign competition and the loss of its main customer, ArcelorMittal, whose sites in the region would not last long.

The interior of the factory is extensively ransacked, after several years of abandonment, dismantling work and the passage of unwanted visitors. Machines and parts have been evacuated over time, such as cylinders that were once stored in the vast hall. However, there are some surprising traces of activity, such as those of a power plant. Among other things, there are 2 magnificent control rooms, one very vintage and the other colored in yellow and blue, often referred to as "Control room S".

Demolished in 2023, the plant gave way to a wasteland that the new John Cockerill group now intends to re-exploit by setting up a new green hydrogen “giga-factory” there. A way to continue the story while turning the page.

ℹ️ Current state: razed

General condition

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