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Official launch of Justice Palace facelift project, 140 years after landmark building’s inauguration

Justice Palace Brussels restoration work on facade
16:45 16/10/2023

Another chapter in the long-running saga of scaffolding and the Justice Palace has been marked by federal and local politicians in Brussels.

Although restoration work on the building’s facades started this summer, the dignitaries gathered on Monday to officially launch the latest restoration round on the 140th anniversary of its inauguration.

Consisting of several phases, the first is due to take around two years. It’s focusing on the cracks and wear and tear of the facade in Place Poelaert. Stones are being restored and cleaning and general safety checks carried out.

New custom-cut stone is sourced from quarries in the French region of Burgundy and Soignies in Wallonia. They originally supplied the material for the Justice Palace, built between 1866 and 1883. The façade will also be re-pointed to help prevent water infiltration.

The next phase is scheduled to concentrate on the base of the dome, followed by restoration tests and work on other facades of the imposing building designed by Joseph Poelaert in an eclectic style of architecture.

And of course, the overriding goal is to remove the scaffolding that has been holding the Justice Palace together since the 1980s. The target for this long-overdue event is 2030.

The official ceremony was attended by justice minister Vincent Van Quickenborne, secretary of state for federal buildings agency Régie des Bâtiments Mathieu Michel, secretary of state for Brussels’ urban planning and heritage Ans Persoons and city mayor Philippe Close.

Photo: © Belga/Dirk Waem


Written by Sarah Crew