OKay Waasmunster

Neighbourhood supermarkets have made a steep rise in the past years. Consumers do not only spend more time in their own region, they also opt for easily accessible stores more often. OKay responded to that conveniently by opening a new branch in Waasmunster in August 2021.

This 140th OKay is a remarkable green project that fits in with the surroundings perfectly. In the original plans, we provided building lots to combine living and shopping on one site. However, these building lots quickly made way for more green space and an additional green buffer, to fit in better with the surroundings.

Person in charge of expansion Nathalie Meganck knows precisely how this project came about.

  • Retaining the green character
  • Easily accessible from Waasmunster
  • Taking into account the needs of the neighbourhood
  • 0% fossil energy

In figures

Location, location, location

Before, residents of Waasmunster had to drive 14 kilometers to reach the nearest OKay (in Moerbeke). A new branch in this municipality is therefore a logical move in times when regional shopping is becoming increasingly popular. Because of its location, this store will serve not only the local population but many passengers on the axis Lokeren-Sint-Niklaas as well.

Away from the centre

Originally, we were looking at the compact city centre of the municipality. After thorough research, we came to a logical conclusion: opening a new store in the compact city centre is far from obvious. That is why we broadened our horizon. In 2014, we bought a private residence and the adjacent building land, located at Schrijbergstraat 110, just outside of the city centre. After the purchase, we could organise the terrain freely, make the building stand out and at the same time fit in seamlessly with its surroundings. To make our plans work even better, we also bought the house next door, at Schrijbergstraat 112.


"During our first visit to OKay Waasmunster we are primarily very proud. We can immediately feel that 'our' store offers an added value for the whole neighbourhood."

Lucien Lambrecht en Lisette Pauwels | Previous owners of Schrijbergstraat 110

Flexibility pays off

The design was changed more than once. We submitted no fewer than three different building applications to meet the needs of all parties involved. Originally, we would provide building lots for residential building, with the consent of the municipality. In the next designs, those building lots made way for more green space. Alongside the only parcel limit with a direct neighbour, we even installed an additional green buffer with a surface of about 4 to 6 metres to create a quiet environment. Now, the degree of occupation of the grounds is barely 48%, which ensures a smooth transition between the nearby residential area, the forest behind, and the store. OKay Waasmunster proves that we are flexible and that we do not hold on to just one design.

Sustainable DNA

Sustainability plays an important role on the grounds. You can already notice this on the parking lot, where electric charging points and even separate parking spaces for cargo bikes have been provided. The building itself is energy-efficient at all levels, from propane cooling - which reduces the CO2 emissions by 90% - to LED lighting that uses 30% less energy. With 180 solar panels, the store has its own power supply and uses no fossil energy at all. By recovering the heat released by the cooling installation, we emit 90% less greenhouse gases.

The paint on the storefront is worth a separate mention. Under the influence of sunlight, this paint will transform harmful substances in the air into nitrate and oxygen. When it rains, the nitrates will dissolve.

The process

2014: Purchase of terrain

2015: Purchase of additional building

2017: Final building application submitted

October 2020: Start of construction

August 2021: Store opening