Brussels is not only Belgium’s capital, it is also the capital of Europe and therefore a major centre of political and economic power. This cosmopolitan and multicultural city is undeniably attractive, both for project leaders looking for an international strategic base for their companies and for investors from all over the world. We give you an overview of the major urban projects that will shape the future of the capital.
Mediapark: a new mixed district focused on creative industries
A new centre of attraction is currently being developed on Boulevard Reyers, on the site of the RTBF and VRT television channels. This project, which is known as Mediapark, is highly visionary and covers a 20-hectare footprint. Created by architect and urban planner François Leclercq, the operation incorporates all the major urban functions and provides 1,600 new housing units, services, shops, offices and other activities based around a 9-hectare metropolitan landscaped park. While the programme runs until 2030, the project began in July 2021 with the laying of the first stone of the future icon of the district called Frame. A true showcase of this new centre in Brussels, Frame is an innovative ecosystem focusing on creative industries, strengthening the region’s international position in this business sector. Covering nearly 10,000 m² (at the corner of Boulevard Revers and Rue Colonel Bourg), this media house will host regional television (BX1), training schools in the audiovisual professions, screen.brussels (a support service for the audiovisual industry), co-working spaces, a business hotel and shared facilities.
In the long term, Mediapark should accommodate 5,000 jobs and almost 4,500 inhabitants.
Josaphat: the former Schaerbeek rail brownfield site undergoing redevelopment
On this site of over 30 hectares, which used to house the former marshalling yard, SAUD is currently developing a new multifunctional district. Located in the north-east of Brussels, Josaphat responds to the growing demand for housing and new tertiary buildings in the BCR.
The operation is based on the topography of this exceptional site, creating a residential park where it is great to live and work. Around this vast landscaped 7-hectare space, 1,400 homes, nurseries, schools, healthcare facilities and 9,600 m² of new offices will be built in the next decade.
Ideally connected to metropolitan territory (only 7 minutes from the European district by metro), Josaphat perfectly embodies the city’s ambition to create new sustainable living spaces.
Heyvaert: a transformation that reconciles housing and economic functions
The Heyvaert district is currently embarking on a new dynamic. Recognised for several decades as the benchmark in the second-hand car trade, this Molenbeek property is currently undergoing an urban regeneration project. In particular, two projects feature in this operation: the first involves reintroducing nature to the city through the creation of the Parc de la Sennette (scheduled for 2023), which will act as an urban seam between the Parc de La Porte de Ninove and Grande Plaine Urbaine des Abattoirs. It will be crossed by soft mobility paths.
The other major operation concerns the creation of a cultural and creative centre on the Manchester industrial sites. This will involve creating a new collaborative and leisure space interacting with the artistic initiatives already in place in this area (Charleroi danse, Cinemaximiliaan, etc.).
Source: rudivervoort.brussels, perspective.brussels
New uses for the Gare de l'Ouest station district
The recent delivery of the real estate programmes Ekla and Go West marked the beginning of the overall regeneration of the Gare de l'Ouest district in Molenbeek. The Development Master Plan approved by a second reading provides for the conversion of a 13-hectare site into a lively new district. The operation is structured around a highly efficient transport hub (the Beekkant multimodal hub and the Gare de l'Ouest station) and provides for a multi-hectare landscaped park, housing, commercial units and new offices, as well as roads for active mobility running through the entire neighbourhood.
The final approval of the Gare de l'Ouest project is expected in the coming months for delivery of the facilities by 2025.
Midi District: towards a 'residents' station
18 million travellers come together here each year from Paris, London, Rotterdam and Frankfurt. But Midi is also a real living neighbourhood that is becoming part of an urban project that will give it new features. The major plans include the redevelopment and greening of public spaces around the station, easier access to public transport, the creation of new synergies with neighbouring areas and the construction of a new living district with housing, facilities and, of course, new tertiary buildings. Among the ongoing operations: the SNCB is planning to build its new head office to bring together the 4,000 SNCB and HR Rail employees by the end of 2024.
Source: canal.brussels, perspective.brussels
Bordet: a reinvented urban identity
With its strategic positioning in the Northeast of the city, Bordet is a promising district. To transform this Brussels enclave (around 200 ha) into a coherent, mixed and accessible neighbourhood, the regeneration project plans to reconnect this puzzle made up of monofunctional areas. This involves the construction of new housing, new offices, shops and cultural and leisure facilities. On the transport side, a multimodal hub (train, tram, bus, future metro 3, RER and bicycle) will link this district to the rest of the city. Finally, improving the living environment, soft mobility connections and green spaces will guarantee the new harmony of this Brussels district.
Between city and forest, the Delta Herrmann-Debroux district is undergoing transformation
The Herrmann-Debroux development master plan is starting the reclassification of an urban site located on either side of the E411 motorway in Auderghem. The various developments planned should highlight the many advantages of the site (protected forest, supermarket, sports centre, planted promenade, transport services, etc.): in addition to the redevelopment of public areas and the creation of pedestrian links, new mixed-purpose buildings will be built on the Triomphe, Beaulieu, Demey, Triangle and Delta sites.
Usquare: the transformation of the Fritz Toussaint barracks in Ixelles
In the next five years, the 44,000 m² of the former Ixelles gendarmerie school will give way to a new piece of open, sustainable city. At the heart of this new urban area will be family and student housing, facilities for researchers (fablab, etc.), local services, soft mobility routes and a 2,000 m² park.
Through this ambitious heritage development project, Brussels is strengthening its status as a leading European university centre, while promoting the integration of the student population at the heart of the urban fabric.