Built-up areas are fast increasing in Flanders and now make up 33% of the region’s territory, according to latest figures of the Environmental Department of the Flemish authority. By 2016, about 450,000 hectares, some 33%, were developed.
Within three years, 7,000 additional hectares, equivalent to 13 football fields, have been taken up each day. It is mainly the number of housing units that has increased. These, including gardens, comprise 39% of all built-up areas, followed by roads and railways (13%), parking lots and squares (11%) and buildings such as churches and monuments (10%).
About 6.5% is occupied by recreational areas such as parks or sports grounds, while 2% are for agriculture.
In 55 Flemish municipalities, the rate of construction is estimated at 50% of all built-up land. This is the case in urban areas in and around Antwerp, Ghent and Brussels