In 1929 the Belgian Shipping Federation, presided by Armand Grisar, decided to organise a national competition to design a spacious school building.
The City of Antwerp provided a site situated north of the Royers Lock.
The architects Van Kriekinge (father and son) won the competition with their “Mercator” project.
On 23 July 1931 the Minister of Transport at that time, Ph. Van Isacker, laid the first stone. The school building was inaugurated at the end of 1932.
In 1959 a new wing was added at the north east side.
Through the years, various internal alterations have been carried out. However, the specific character of this typical interbellum building has always been preserved.