Coronavirus: Brussels plans to restart construction
Tuesday, 07 April 2020
Brussels authorities will start to plan to restart public construction that had to be put on hold due to the measures to curb the new coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.
A construction coordination committee has been meeting since 30 March to coordinate how to restart construction with as little negative impact on the economy’s recovery as possible. “It all depends on how the lockdown will be lifted, but it’s probable that [restarting] construction sites located in strategic economic zones would be postponed,” said Brussels Mobility Minister Elke Van den Brandt. In other words, important commercial areas will be spared so businesses wouldn’t be compromised any further as they pick up again after the lockdown.
95% of all public construction in Brussels has come to a halt in light of the difficulty to comply with social distancing and equipment sanitising rules. Additionally, Brussels’ public transport operator STIB has had to drastically reduce a campaign to renew 15 kilometres of rail.
Meanwhile, “some important work is still being done,” said Camille Thiry, spokesperson for Brussels Mobility told l’Echo on Tuesday. This includes repairing markings and fixing potholes. “The reduced traffic helps to ease all that work,” Thiry said, also pointing out that seasonal jobs such as planting are still being carried out.
For STIB, the reduced traffic brings a silver lining as well: “Surveyors have resumed their work, which allows us to advance and plan future sites,” noted STIB spokesperson Françoise Ledune.