Gare Martitime, once Europe’s largest railway station for goods on the Tour & Taxis site in Brussels, has been transformed into a covered city with a mixed program of working and shopping and plenty of public space to relax. Under impressive steel roofs, Neutelings Riedijk Architects designed the new Gare Maritime as a City District; ‘a city where it never rains’.
The building dates from the beginning of the 20th century. Under the roofs of the side aisles, twelve wooden pavilions have been added to accommodate the new program. They create a new structure of boulevards and street, parks and squares that follows the urban context and the building structure in a natural way. The central space in the heart of the building has been kept open for public events. On both sides of the event space the green walking boulevards are wide enough to plant ten large gardens.
The impressive building with a surface area of almost 40,000m² creates space for various urban activities such as shops, offices, exhibition spaces, markets and festivities.
Under the supervision of Neutelings Riedijk Architects, responsible for the architecture of the new buildings.
OMGEVING was responsible for the design of the covered outdoor space and the site monitoring in cooperation with Bureau Bouwtechniek. The eye-catcher of the Gare Maritime is the central open hall, constructed in reused cobblestones, where various temporary activities can take place. The central hall is flanked by ten inner gardens, each with a thematical interpretation.
The project won the international prize ARC20, a Dutch architecture competition.