Around 700 people attended an urban aperitif in the middle of the busy rue de la Loi in Brussels on Thursday to discuss air pollution in the city, according to estimates by the organisers.
Participants gathered between 6:00 PM and 10:00 PM to denounce air pollution and called on the new Brussels government to test a three-lane system instead of four on this major artery in Brussels. The event was organised by the Bruxsel'Air citizen group, the Critical Mass movement, and the GRACQ cyclists' association.
Participants invaded a section of the road currently under construction with sun loungers, local beer, snacks, hay bales, and music. "The rue de la Loi is highly symbolic," explained Florine Cuignet, Brussels policy officer at GRACQ.
"This is the street we see in the media when we talk about Europe and Brussels. We see 4 lanes reserved for cars, but what we see less are pedestrians and cyclists. It should be noted that rue de la Loi is also an axis with the highest number of cyclists during peak hours. It would, therefore, be normal to give them more space," she added.
In an attempt to prevent bottles being left around or smashed, attendees were charged an additional Euro deposit on every beer, The Brussels Times has learned.
The Brussels Times