SNCB to transform the empty ‘palaces’ under Brussels train tracks
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    SNCB to transform the empty ‘palaces’ under Brussels train tracks

    In recent years, the Brussels Region has made it clear on several occasions that the spaces have a key function in revitalising the neighbourhood. Credit: Pascal Smet/Facebook

    The Belgian railway company SNCB has said it will launch a procedure to redevelop the large spaces under the tracks between Gare du Midi and the Small Ring, after leaving them empty for about 40 years.

    Between the Gare du Midi and the Small Ring in Brussels, there are two large spaces with a combined surface area of about 22,000 square metres, according to SNCB.

    In 2018, Pascal Smet, then-Minister for Public Works thought it would be “an interesting space to organise activities. But agreements with SNCB will have to be made first,” reported De Standaard.

    In recent years, the Brussels Region has made it clear on several occasions that the spaces have a key function in revitalising the neighbourhood around the Midi station, but the spaces have remained empty for about 40 years.

    “SNCB is looking for partners in the public and private sectors to think about a global and coherent concept for its occupation (in a reasonably short period of time),” the company wrote in a reaction, reports Bruzz. “This year, there will be another request for information for this,” it added.

    The railway company sees potential in the spaces for functions such as a food hall, a bicycle shed, shops or catering establishments.

    Maïthé Chini
    The Brussels Times