An empty office block on the busy Avenue de Tervuren in Woluwe-Saint-Pierre in Brussels was demolished at emergency speed on Tuesday. The building had shown signs of imminent collapse. The building – the former Chien Vert office block – was in the process of being converted into apartments. Builders on the works noticed the construction was beginning to sway, and raised the alarm.
A safety perimeter was established, and residents of neighbouring blocks evacuated to a nearby sports centre. Police and fire service were present, and gas and electricity were turned off. Trams and buses servicing the avenue were stopped, and a replacement bus service laid on avoiding the scene.
Traffic was re-established around 22.00, when the situation had been evaluated and danger ruled out. Trams 39 and 44 will resume on Wednesday morning.
“The unstable section has been destroyed,” Woluwe mayor Benoit Cerexhe said in a statement. “The job was carried out without surprises, in the best of conditions. Now, the works are being carried out in the manner of a normal demolition,” he said.
The owner of the building, responsible for the renovations, had obtained all of the necessary permits.