New ‘mosque of the future’ in Jette advised against by committee
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    New ‘mosque of the future’ in Jette advised against by committee

    "As has been stressed several times, it is not enough to apply for an urban planning application for a mosque, since the project is clearly much larger," said Shirley Doyen (MR). Credit: Tifonte-Parmakran-Macbahi

    A Brussels’ committee has advised against the new mosque that was supposed to be built on the Rue Esseghem in Jette, mostly due to the difficult mobility situation the works would cause.

    The consultation committee, which oversees procedures for the submission, processing, issue and appeal of planning and environmental permits, unanimously advised against the mosque being built. The committee’s advice refers, among other things, to the difficult mobility situation and the lack of parking spaces for the homes in the project, reported Bruzz.

    The complete soil stabilisation, the absence of a fire brigade advice and the scale of the project are also cited as reasons for the advice. The plans for the new mosque are ambitious and include, apart from a very modern design, a gym space, classrooms, a sports hall, a library and even residencies.

    To finance the project, a non-profit organization launched a crowdfunding campaign. However, 154 residents had submitted a notice of objection against the mosque. The complainants were particularly concerned about the possible mobility impact on the neighbourhood.

    “As has been stressed several times, it is not enough to apply for an urban planning application for a mosque, since the project is clearly much larger. Although it includes a mosque, it also includes classrooms, a gym, housing, etc. In short, a truly polyvalent centre of faith and culture,” said Shirley Doyen (MR), the Alderman for Urban Planning, according to Het Laatste Nieuws.

    The possible noise nuisance due to the large-scale nature of the project is also a problem, as is the lack of input from the fire services. The project also deviates from regional building standards in many ways, not least because of the large service area.

    Additionally, the project does not integrate sufficiently into the sustainable Magritte neighbourhood, and infringements were found against the Civil Code regarding co-ownership.

    This does not mean that the mosque cannot be built as the nonprofit organisation is allowed to submit a new, modified application.

    Maïthé Chini
    The Brussels Times