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Brussels relaxes conditions for building cycling paths

Cycle paths in Brussels Pascal
13:19 27/04/2022

It’ll be easier to build a cycling path in Brussels following a relaxation of permit requirements by the region’s government. 

Following approval of a series of decrees on urban planning exemptions and permits of limited duration, marked cycle paths with soft bollards on municipal roads can now be built without a permit.

“Brussels needs speed and efficiency. These simplified procedures will make life easier for many of the city’s residents,” said Brussels state secretary for town planning Pascal Smet. 

Removing a parking strip in order to construct a cycle path will also no longer require a permit. 

Smet’s office says that in the future, many projects will be exempt from planning permission, mainly small-scale ones and ones that involve permits of limited duration. 

“The government is thus redesigning a large part of Brussels urban planning in the areas of social projects, housing, insulation, access to outdoor spaces for residents and the layout of public spaces,” reads a statement.

Exemptions will not apply to projects that are subject to an environmental impact report or study.

The objectives are in line with Good Move, Brussels’ regional mobility plan, and the new Regional Urban Development Ordinance (RDR) Good Living served as the basis for rewriting and simplifying the ordinance, which is currently in a first phase.

Additional administrative relaxation 

The changes to ordinances include other relaxations to permit-requiring projects. 

“From now on, it will be easier for Brussels residents to use their homes for a liberal profession or to give private courses,” Smet explained.

“Solar panels and murals on side walls can be built without a permit. The same goes for raising a roof to insulate it, on condition that the GSV is respected.”

Other changes are in areas such as high-branch trees, water management systems, renewable energy, telecommunications, construction sites and road works. 

Photo: Pascal


Written by Helen Lyons