The world faces urgent challenges in the areas of climate, biodiversity, health and a more balanced distribution of wealth. Urban cores such as the Brussels metropolitan area are in the eye of the storm, but also play a pioneering role in providing solutions. The expansion and connection of open spaces is rightly central to the most recent policy documents, as a future-oriented solution that connects nature, people and society.
Together with five regional authorities, we support the construction of a unique interregional network of open spaces in and around Brussels, aimed at strengthening ecosystem services, green infrastructure and nature-based solutions. Initially, a vision was developed that frames economic and demographic changes and integrates various functions: landscape, ecological, recreational, food supply, climate, ecosystem strengthening, health and quality of life.
A coherent vision has been developed on the basis of analyses and co-creation processes at three scale levels. At the macro level, opportunities have been identified to strengthen and expand the large open space corridors between urban and rural areas for biodiversity, water, freshness, local agriculture and active mobility, among others. For example, open space can act as a structuring element for healthy urban growth. At meso level, we translate the vision into spatial strategies to create cohesion in the northern edge, which ecologically strengthen existing open and urbanized spaces. For some specific locations, more detailed research has been done at micro level to detect and formulate concrete guidelines that are applicable at the scale of the plot, the street, the building block and the urban district.
The vision will now be operationalized in the projects and instruments of the various partners in collaboration with local authorities, users, investors and owners of open spaces. It is now important that this vision is implemented through the implementation of projects, the development of appropriate tools and sustained knowledge sharing and cooperation.
To support and guide bottom-up initiatives, an implementation platform has been set up for the period 2022-2025. Customers can join this plant to incorporate parts of the described open space network and increase consistency and sustainability in their studies and implementation projects. We support this with regard to spatial landscape architecture, as well as the necessary litigation and knowledge sharing with local governments, users, investors and open space owners.
More information about the vision and the implementation platform for the Brussels Open Space Network: