Official delivery of the permit concerning the Rond Point Schuman

Published on : 3 Nov 2023

Reaction of the GAQ

The GAQ is reacting to the official delivery of the permit concerning the Rond Point Schuman

• The granting of the permit was announced on X by Ans Persoons, then in a statement including some sketches of this project, presented as ‘iconic’ and as a signal sent to the entire world.

• A method that confirms the denial of democracy and transparency that has characterized this project from its inception.

• The chosen formula does not take into account the expectations – and fears – of the residents and merchants who know the realities of the area better than anyone.

• It endorses the idea that our neighborhouds consists in office districts, in which conviviality and diversity need to be introduced. This is contrary to the reality of the figures – 10,000 inhabitants.

• The traffic figures date back to before the COVID, which had significant consequences on traffic in the area.

• The chosen formula is a budgetary abyss, and given the recent example of budgetary euphoria – the Palais du Midi example – we can fear that the work may have to be interrupted with consequences for the residents, users, merchants, and services.

• Place Schuman provides access to metro and railway stations. Given the erratic progress of other construction projects involving Beliris and STIB, as well as their monitoring, residents, commuters, and European officials fear having to navigate between construction machinery and ‘diverted’ sidewalks for years. A heightened concern regarding access for people with reduced mobility.

• The original plan, now confirmed, falls under the utopian vision of a team perceived as out of touch by the residents, users, and merchants who have been heard but not listened to.

• The permit does not provide for accompanying plans for the secondary streets to which traffic will have to divert during and after the works.

• The reorganisation of traffic around Schuman will divide the so-called European district in half, favoring a car sewer from the exit of the E40 to Rue de la Loi.

• The redevelopment of the Schuman-Cinquantenaire section has already been modified several times, at great expense.

• No one indicates where demonstrations taking place in the Schuman will be relocated.

• A compensation fund must be provided for the inevitable damage caused by the construction traffic to private homes, businesses, and other activities that will be affected during the works.

Furthermore, we reject the misappropriation of generous concepts that the GAQ and other residents’ organizations have always supported, including greening, functional diversity, the sharing of public space, and, of course, dialogue and consultation. We regret that the European authorities, who are the originators of the “green plans” accepted by member states, do not caution against a project that will destroy the social fabric of an entire neighborhoud, swallow a colossal budget, and is presented as a symbol of Brussels and Europe.

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