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Canal Area: Landscape and Urban Development Quality Plan launched

 - ©© - BAS SMETS/ORG²

Design firms ORG SQUARED and BUREAU BAS SMETS have been chosen to prepare the Landscape and Urban Development Quality Plan for the public spaces in the Canal Area. The objectives are to substantiate the overall vision of the Canal Plan in terms of public space and improve the coherence between projects through high-quality public space design.

The fast-changing Canal Area

The potential that the Canal Area presents is of vital importance given the development challenges faced by the Brussels-Capital Region. In 2012, the Regional Government decided to draw up a development plan for this area: the Canal Plan. Since 2016, 130 projects and studies have been analysed by the Canal team.

A specific strategy for public space in the Canal Area

In view of the multitude of projects, a more specific strategy for public space is needed in addition to the existing overall development vision of the Canal Plan. The strategy concerns the diverse range of public spaces that typify the Canal Area, such as quays,  connecting streets, crossings and squares. The quality of the public space is crucial to the quality of life by the Canal. The public space must serve as the link between the city's different districts and stakeholders, a place of social cohesion and relaxation, a breathing space in the city. These are the issues addressed by the Landscape and Urban Development Quality Plan.

This plan will consist of:

  •  a strategic framework for future projects: vision and planning guidelines
  • a procurement centre enabling each public space operator (federal, regional or municipal) to use the services of design firms for the design of the public spaces for which it is responsible: this will avoid the need for a separate contract award procedure and ensure coherence of public spaces throughout the Canal Area

The consortium consisting of the design agencies ORG SQUARED and BUREAU BAS SMETS has been chosen to prepare this Plan, under the supervision of

A strategy for the benefit of all operators in the city

The Landscape Quality Plan for the Canal’s public spaces is a strategy and a mechanism that should facilitate the work of different operators in the city in charge of public spaces.

For an operator such as a municipality or a regional administration, using the procurement centre proposed by the plan will avoid the need for a procedure to select a design firm and save time. For the Region, it ensures a consistent approach throughout the Canal Area.

In the coming weeks, will organise information sessions for all stakeholders to raise awareness of the opportunities presented by this project.

Find out more about the Quality Plan and projects