Guzianka I lock is ready! Polish Waters invests in Masuria

Wodne Sprawy 5 2024 1

In early March this year. Another important investment completed in recent years on the Great Masurian Lakes Route was put into operation. Guzianka I sluice is a hydrotechnical monument and an important part of the region’s water infrastructure. Its operation will increase the safety of boaters and have a positive impact on the development of tourism in Mazury. The project was subsidized by the European Regional Development Fund.

Guzianka I sluice – comprehensive modernization

Built in 1879. Guzianka lock is located on the trail leading from Lake Mikołajskie to Lake Nidzkie and directly connects Lakes Beldany and Guzianka Mała, leveling the two-meter difference in level. The renovation included replacing gates and communication gangways and mechanisms, as well as upgrading slopes and sealing the ground. The surrounding buildings have also been renovated. The entire investment cost about PLN 16 million, and was carried out with the support of the Regional Operational Program of the Warmian-Masurian Voivodeship for 2014-2020. The beneficiary of the project was the Great Mazurian Lakes Association 2020, and the work was carried out in partnership with the State Water Company Wody Polskie.

For the duration of the closure of the overhauled facility, sailing traffic on the route was handled by the Guzianka II lock, built with EU funding three years earlier on the initiative of the Polish Waters. It is capable of accommodating 10 large or 12 smaller yachts arranged in two rows. After the opening of Guzianka I, water traffic was split so that the renovated facility handles large vessels, while the modern Guzianka II lock handles smaller vessels.

Wodne Sprawy 5 2024 2
pic. Wody Polskie

Other Masurian investments by Polish Waters

The construction of Guzianka II was the first stage in a series of investments planned by Wody Polskie in the area of the Great Mazurian Lakes. Its total cost was nearly PLN 160 million, and the work was completed in 2023. Another will be canal repairs on the route from Mikolajki to Gizycko. The first to begin renovation was built in the 18th century. Luczanski Canal, formerly known as Gizycki Canal. The work included the construction of bank reinforcements and new outlets for rainwater, as well as the installation of bumpers, polders, ladders and steps. The implementation, which cost more than PLN 69 million, was completed in early December 2023.

Last year, the Great Mazurian Lakes 2020 Association, in cooperation with Polish Waters, also repaired the Szymon Canal over its full length of 2.5 kilometers, the Węgorzewo Canal and the fortifications on the Węgorapa River. These investments cost a total of more than PLN 80 million. Previously, the Grunwald Canal, the Kaltec Canal, the Beautiful Mountain Canal and the Miodun Canal were also modernized. In early 2024. Wody Polskie has also announced the commissioning of a sluice and weir in Karwik. Dating back to the 19th century. The facilities perform an important function in Mazurian shipping, connecting Pisz with the Great Lakes system, while creating a water stage of retention and flood significance. The cost of this important investment amounted to PLN 13 million.

The comprehensive renovation of the Great Masurian Lakes Trail also included the reconstruction of dilapidated lake shorelines, including. Mikołajski, Nidzki and Niegocin. The modernization of the Pisa waterfront is also underway, which has unfortunately encountered bureaucratic problems. As early as 2024. Water sports enthusiasts will be able to use the newly opened locks and canals.

The Great Mazurian Lakes and the development of regional tourism

The Guzianka I and II sluices and other investments by Polish Waters aim to increase the tourist attractiveness of one of Poland’s most beautiful regions. The measures taken improve the safety of sailors, increase the comfort of sailing, and the profits generated are allocated to the socio-economic development of the Warmian-Masurian province.

Wody Polskie is planning further investments to help increase the tourist potential of Mazury. In 2025. The preparation of documentation for the restoration of the waterway from Warsaw to the Great Masurian Lakes will be completed. There is also talk of building tunnels that would connect Tyrklo and Buvellno lakes, giving boaters the opportunity to circumnavigate the Great Lakes Route all the way around. The Mazurian Loop – as the long-range plan is called – is expected to cost 400 million zlotys, with completion projected for 2029.

According to the Gizycko Tourist Promotion and Information Center, in 2023. The number of domestic and foreign tourists in Masuria increased by 7 and 8 percent, respectively, compared to the previous year. It remains to be hoped that new investments will boost the momentum of this favorable trend.

Photo source. main: Wody Polskie

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