Ixelles’ Saint-Boniface square will become permanently pedestrian
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Ixelles’ Saint-Boniface square will become permanently pedestrian

Credit: Google Street View

Cars will be permanently banned from a square in a bustling district near Brussels’ European Quarter as authorities continue to create pedestrian-only areas in the city.

Large pots were put on the road in Place Saint-Boniface in Ixelles to block vehicles from entering the roundabout.

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Local residents and vehicles delivering supplies to businesses in the area will be exempted from the ban, according to Bruzz.

Authorities said the changes aimed to facilitate social distancing and provide more space for restaurants, cafes and bars to spread out their terraces as they begin to reopen.

The initiative is also in line with a local mobility plan, adopted by Ixelles officials in 2018, which aims to reduce vehicle traffic in the municipality, an area which is popular with both the local and expatriate communities of Brussels.

The move in the Matongé district of the city comes amid a wider push to reduce vehicle circulation as the city emerges from the coronavirus lockdown, throughout which motorised traffic was cut back dramatically.

As the Belgian capital began to emerge from the lockdown, several other municipalities announced the creation of slow or cycling streets where cyclists and pedestrians would have priority over cars.

In downtown Brussels, local and regional mobility authorities made the entire area inside the inner-city ring a “residential area,” from which all motorised vehicles are completely banned.

Gabriela Galindo
The Brussels Times