Brussels to extend pedestrianised zone in city centre to Rogier

Brussels to extend pedestrianised zone in city centre to Rogier
Digital image of what the Boulevard will look like once works are completed. Credit: Pascal Smet cabinet

In recent years, Brussels' city centre has undergone various transformations, especially around Boulevard Anspach, which has become largely car-free. This pedestrian-friendly zone will now be further extended to Rogier.

The Brussels Government on Wednesday announced the approval of the building permit for complete makeover of Boulevard Adolphe Max, which links Place De Brouckère to Place Charles Rogier, as well as the surrounding streets, which will be "redesigned from facade to facade to blend in with the pedestrian area in the city centre.

“The construction of the pedestrian area has been a milestone in turning Brussels into a city for people. We have to keep this positive momentum going," said Brussels State Secretary for Urbanism Pascal Smet.

"The new avenue will visually connect the pedestrian area with the Northern Quarter, another strategic district that we are fully upgrading."

Works to create a pedestrian zone between Place Fontainas and Place De Brouckère were recently finalised, resulting in the area gaining in popularity, as a recent VUB study showed.

Unified pedestrian-friendly zones

Boulevard Adolphe Max in its current form dates back to 1976 when it was constructed with a focus on transit traffic and parking, leaving little space for pedestrians to walk comfortably.

Boulevard Adolphe Max in Brussels in 1967. Credit: Belga

The renovations will start soon, and once they are finalised, people visiting the city centre will be able to stroll along from Place Fontainas to Boulevard Adolphe Max without encountering cars.

“Boulevard Adolphe Max and the adjacent streets were in urgent need of renovation. The new design will connect them visually and spatially to the pedestrian area, but above all, bushes, trees and plants will be added as much as possible," Ans Persoons, Councillor for Urbanism and Public Space, said.

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The city authorities will pay special attention to planting various types of greenery: high-stem and multi-trunk trees, perennials, ornamental grasses and bulbs.

"We also hope the project will boost local commerce and that Brussels residents will rediscover this prestigious avenue and its remarkable heritage," Persoons added.

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