Motorway service areas
SOFICO manages around one hundred rest areas along the Walloon motorways. They allow users to take a break from their journey and to take advantage of the many other services available.
There are 4 types of motorway service areas based on the extent of the services offered :
Type I areas
Filling station, shops, meals and refreshments, business centre (reception, meeting rooms, etc.), hotel, toilets, outside facilities (picnic area, children’s playground, rest area, etc.)
TYPE III areas
Shops, meals and refreshments, toilets, outside facilities (picnic area, children’s playground, etc.)
Type II areas
Filling station, shops, meals and refreshments, toilets, outside facilities (picnic area, children’s playground, rest area, etc.)
TYPE IV areas
SOFICO licences out about 40 service areas to oil companies or SMEs which carry out maintenance and provide services there. These companies provide additional financial resources to modernise the areas, particularly focussing on :
- Improving services and adapting them to suit users’ requirements: meals and refreshments, WIFI, meeting rooms, shops, etc.
- Ensuring as much self-sufficiency in renewable energies as possible
- Using high-performance materials
- Integrating the service areas into the local economy in line with local partners
- Creating car parks for heavy goods vehicles and car-pooling car parks, etc.
To improve the quality of service even more, inspections and audits of motorway service areas – whether licensed out or not – are regularly conducted by the Walloon Commission on motorway facilities (CWEA).
Alcohol-free motorway service areas
SOFICO also wants to move towards forbidding the sale of alcohol in the motorway service areas in its network. This aim took concrete form in September 2017 when it renewed the concession for the Bierges service area which became the first alcohol-free motorway service area in Wallonia. SOFICO hopes to extend this interdiction when the next concessions are renewed.
A selective sorting pilot project
In 2016, in collaboration with Wallonie Plus Propre (for a cleaner Wallonia), SOFICO launched a pilot project involving the selective sorting of waste at 9 rest areas that are not licensed out in the Liège motorway district.
Sufficient car parking spaces for heavy goods vehicles
Given the large number of heavy goods vehicles using the structuring network, we need to ensure that there are sufficient parking spaces that are properly indicated, well maintained and that offer rest areas. It is also essential to ensure that lorries are spread out in a balanced way in the spaces provided.