17.6.20: European Quarter in Brussels – aristocratic past, monofunctional present, new urban future?

A Virtual Lunch Walk for Archined via Zoom

While the EU, in the midst of a crisis, has to search for new paths to the future, the same could be said of the European Quarter in Brussels. The area is the result of both careful urban planning and insensitive changes. In the 19th century this district was the first properly planned expansion to the new capital, with imposing residences for the nobility and upper class, well arranged around two impressive parks. A century later and despite protests, the historic buildings made way for modernist offices to house the many EU institutions. Today the first steps are being taken to transform this monofunctional district into a mixed-use piece of the city. Christian de Portzamparc’s master plan will turn the canyon-like main axis into a series of green squares. The first residential towers have already been completed. Plans for new commission buildings have also been published, while those for a new European Parliament are on the way. Signs of good intentions – and their limits.

For the third time, Archined.nl will give me the opportunity to do a virtual live tour in which, like on a real tour, we can explore architecture and public spaces. This time we will ‚walk‘ through a district with a little-known yet rich history, and a possibly more urban future. That future must reconcile today’s urban visions, the challenges of public and private transport, the intentions of private developers and, last but not least, the question of how the European project can be adequately represented through architecture.

Archined Virtual Lunch Walk, language: English
Wednesday, 17 june 2020
Start tour at: 12.00h, ends 12.45h.
Sign up by sending an email to news@archined.nl. You will then receive a link and a password. Please sign up before noon on Wednesday 17 june.

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