ARJM, in collaboration with SUM, recently won the competition for their project, "Square de l'Accueil" (Welcoming Square), which includes a public square of 10,000 m2, 53 flats, a school, commercial spaces and underground parking. Located in a neighborhood at a strategic entry point towards Evere, one of Brussels communes, the project itself includes all the components of the city at a smaller scale. More images and architects’ description after the break.
The project is the missing ‘puzzle piece’ to the realization of the current site as an animated liveable space. The project proposes to address the increasing diversity and density of a Brussels neighborhood by re-thinking the interplay and the transition between public and private spaces. This is achieved, first, through landscaping which is manifested by a green (vegetation) and a blue (water) thread running through the public place, the commercial spaces on the ground floor of the proposed building and the housing units.
The livability of the site is assured through a network of ‘communities of interest’: the larger community, the neighborhood, is progressively broken down into smaller bundles of individuals and households polarized towards shared spaces, firmly located within the site at large. This proposed layout presents a viable tool to manage the density and the diversity of the urban context of the site, characteristic of Brussels today.
The project uses the current site and its uses as the starting point, taking into account the historical evolution of the neighborhood. This approach contributes to the realization of the site’s full potential, thereby ensuring its longevity and usability in the urban landscape.
Architect: ARJM (Abdelmajid Boulaioun)
Location: Square de l'Accueil, Brussels, Belgium
Contractor: Commune de Evere
Building Services: JZH
Program: public square + housing complex + school facilities + underground parking
Public Square Area: 10,000 sqm
Building Area: 7,000 sqm
Status: Competition winner
Competition Year: 2012