Brussels: Go-ahead given for Sainctelette Square makeover

Brussels: Go-ahead given for Sainctelette Square makeover
Credit: Belga

Sainctelette Square has the reputation of being an accident-prone intersection that is not easy to navigate on foot, by bicycle or by car, but all that is about to change., the capital’s regional planning and heritage authority, has granted planning permission for the redevelopment of the square, with a view to making it safer and more attractive for all users.

Work begins in Autumn and will last for three years, Brussels Secretary of State for Urban Planning Pascal Smet and Minister for Mobility Elke Van den Brandt announced on Friday.

Saturated, user-unfriendly, dirty

Sainctelette Square is a major crossroads in the Belgian capital. Historically, the area has always been strategic, with the presence of the River Senne, and then the canal.

The crossroads, which includes a bridge linking the two banks of the river, is used by both motorists and cyclists, as well as public transport – buses and trams.

At present, Sainctelette Square is a saturated, inhospitable and dirty junction.

Wider lanes and pedestrian areas

The redevelopment project will redesign the existing traffic lanes and widen them. Priority will be given to keeping car traffic out of neighbourhoods, and therefore on the main routes.

For public transport, the redevelopment will make it possible to create a proper tram station between the Parc Maximilien, Yser metro station and Boulevard de Dixmude.

Pedestrian areas will be widened and traffic lights will be coordinated for crossings.

Tree-lined walkways, street furniture

The existing secure cycle lane on the small ring will be extended and linked to a new passage for two-wheelers along the canal, under the Sainctelette Bridge.

The aim is also to create a real “square” on the bridge, with homogeneous materials, modern street furniture, new lighting and trees.

A total of 124 trees are to be planted as part of the project.

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