Brussels Mobility to green 10 000 m2 of brick and asphalt
Brussels Mobility is seizing the planting season to soften further and green the public space in the capital. It wants to transform in one year 10 000 square meters of dolomite and asphalt into green spaces with better soil permeability.
Between 2020 and 2022, 20 000 square meters, the equivalent of two football pitches, will have been planted along the roads and in the public spaces. “Simply enlarging the pits at the foot of trees already has a significant impact,” Brussels Mobility stresses.
Since 2020, Brussels Mobility has carried out numerous small, local projects that create new green spaces at major intersections and traffic routes to improve water runoff into the ground. Now that the planting season has arrived, these projects are being tackled with priority.
“We are going from district to district and from street to street to see if we can do more softening and greening,” says Elke Van den Brandt (Groen), Brussels Minister of Mobility and Public Works.
“That way, we win on two fronts: the city becomes more pleasant for its residents, and we arm ourselves against the consequences of climate change. The result is a greener city, a haven of peace in every neighborhood, and more breathing space for the people of Brussels.”
Different rain gardens
Dozens of greening projects are planned this winter. For example, at the intersection of Mons Road and Dover street in Anderlecht, the areas with marked stripes will be transformed into a ‘rain garden’.
At the Bossaert – Sermon – Laken axis, no less than 1 000 square meters of dolomite will disappear and be replaced by fertile soil and plants. On the Etterbeek road, five new trees will be planted, and a rain garden will also be created.
According to Brussels Mobility, the Etterbeek roadway is an excellent example of greening with a rain garden. The project aims to collect runoff water from the road in the central berm, where it will be filtered naturally and guided into the landscaping.
The runoff water percolates through a filter bed of sand and earth. It is placed under the topsoil and acts as a retention medium. This technique contributes to the preventive, sustainable, and ecological management of rainwater.
Loss of green space
Last year, a study by the University of Amsterdam showed that Brussels is not in good shape. Satellite images show that between 2003 and 2016, Brussels lost no less than 14% of its green space. That is 1% per year.
At the beginning of this year, Brussels Mobility hired a ‘greening’ specialist. In this way, the public service wants to accelerate the greening of public spaces.