HD54 permit delivered
Entering Brussels from the east, the ForÍt de Soignes abrubtly ends on your right giving rise to a non-descript string of questionable 1980ís po-mo feats. That said, however dissuasive the sculptural antics, the main issue is that these obsolete relics constitute Brusselsí greatest contribution to GHG. Tear it all down ? but HD54ís existing structure is sound, and volumes surprisingly promising. Developer AXA REIM and architectesassoc have therefore skirted demolition/newBuild preferring instead heavy refurb : stripping off the present lackluster brick skin, streaming down overbearing volumes thus generating a succesion of convivial terraces east overlooking the forest, shifting sqmís towards the overpass south thus marking the prow, and finally wrapping up the upgraded forms with a pre-fab timber skin clad in delicate glass mosaÔc. The BREEAM certified ensemble tickles excellent, offers exemplary energy-efficiency, and seriously pushes circular processes along with collaborative work-modes. Indeed, all of the existing double-pane glass will get a second life as a bucolic country greenhouse in Brusselsí outskirts, crushed bricks as dry stone walls for landscaping on site, and existing partitions/furniture/lighting fixtures as trendy fit-outs at Brusselsí upcoming Recyk-Ecopole and FabLab. Intense stuff. Works start before summer 2017.