2001 - 2013

New-build housing completing the 1960s Brusilia Tower avenues Bertrand and Voltaire in Schaerbeek.

  • residential
  • office
  • private
  • refurbishment
  • new build
Avenues Louis Bertrand and Voltaire 1030 Brussels
BPI sa
Structural engineering
Services engineer
S.T.D. Consulting
7 965 m² above ground level and 3 841 m² below ground level
10 818 000 € htva

Complete description

This extension of the existing Brusilia Tower (built in 1969), sitting on the border of the Josaphat Park, is an attempt to fill the 35–story void left when its twin tower was never constructed. Complete rehabilitation of the site consists of carefully-scaled built and un-built masses and their articulation, visual links between surrounding landscape and public / semi-private spaces, strategic positioning of entrances (principal and secondary) and of all horizontal distributions (covered galleries, gangways,…).

On the calm very residential rue Voltaire, a first low-lying wing recreates street alignment. Then set back, a second 9-level wing hinges itself onto the first through its two-story main entrance, directly connected to a semi-public covered gallery running along the whole of the back façade, offering glimpses (of gardens, neighbors, and sky) left and right and upwards as it goes. The taller volume, offering generous terraces on its entire south façade, creates transition between the traditional urban fabric below, and the imposing 1960s icon towering above. Perceived as two gently-folded white prisms, the two volumes lay the boundaries of a semi-private garden facing the park.

A heavily insulated skin, careful detailing avoiding thermal bridges, and up-to-date heating and ventilation systems including dual-flow ventilation all contribute to the high energy efficiency obtained. Rainwater recovery, green roofs, and indigenous planting bring added value to the affordable housing proposed.