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Brussels launches major improvement project for pavements and transport stops

15:10 23/03/2021

Don’t pinch yourself, you’re not dreaming: Brussels is going to start repairing pavements. Following a thorough study on the state of pavements, a region-wide improvement project is about to launch.

In Brussels, 40% of all journeys are made by foot. “Walking is good for our health, for our environment and for the atmosphere in the city,” said mobility minister Elke Van den Brandt (Groen). “That’s why pedestrians are at the heart of the Good Move mobility plan. Now we are actually implementing these principles in our infrastructure and renovation policy.”

Pavements will not only be repaired but also improved to allow those with limited mobility better access. “The guiding principle is that new pavements should be comfortable to use for everyone,” said Abdel Moussati of Brussels Mobility. “So we’ll be working with large concrete paving slabs.”

The agency will take natural slopes into account, Moussati said and adapt pedestrian crossings. “Public transport stops will also been adapted to the latest accessibility standards.”

All pavements in the region have been assessed and put into categories, including busy pavements around train stations, intermediate pavements that connect busier ones and neighbourhood pavements. On the basis of the category, decisions will be made as to how extensive certain improvements will be. Whole stoops will be replaced in the busiest areas, for instance.

The improvements and repair project will last for about two years.

The popular app Fix My Street will also be updated this year to allow residents to report accessibility problems. In 2019, 62,000 trouble spots were reported with the app, including broken pavements, potholes, illegal dumping and other damaged or defective public infrastructure.

Photo courtesy Fix My Street

Written by Lisa Bradshaw