Refurbishing a historic Art Deco building in Brussels to provide state of the art facilities for the European Council. Image: Philippe Samyn and Partners
The intricate elliptical refurbishing of a historic Art Deco building in Brussels to provide state of the art facilities for the European Council. Image: Philippe Samyn and Partners
Our team developed integrated strategies to provide the building with excellent environmental performance, thermal insulation and acoustic protection. Image: Philippe Samyn and Partners
Following the decision to hold all European Council meetings and summits in Brussels, new facilities are required to accommodate continuing development. The Council is currently housed in an impressive listed Art Deco building that dates back almost 100 years, representing Belgiums valuable architectural history. BuroHappold Engineering is working as part of the design team to refurbish the existing historical building and create a striking new extension.
The new wing of the Council building will feature an elliptical main hub within a glazed cube. The intricate facade is designed to incorporate a patchwork of oak windows and single glazing reclaimed from different countries within the European Union, seeking to bring together a number of nations within the building fabric itself.
As well as its complex form, our team need to deliver a design that offers excellent environmental performance, thermal insulation and acoustic protection against the busy city centre streets. In addition to the acoustic challenges of a city location, our team are required to overcome the difficult site, which is in close proximity to other major buildings and has a railway tunnel running underneath it.
With sustainability and acoustic performance at the forefront of the design brief, our team are currently considering a number of methods to ensure optimal performance. These include the use of ground source coupling for heating and cooling, rainwater recycling and thermal and photovoltaic panels imbedded into the facade and roof. It is proposed that the photovoltaic panels will cover both the existing and new buildings, demonstrating how the two will work together in unison.
Both striking and distinguished, as well as technologically advanced, the new European Council Headquarters is set to provide an outstanding facility for the Council. Demonstrating the diversity within the countries it represents, the headquarters will lead the way in the future of public building design.
Client: Regie des Batiment
Architect: Studio Valle Progettazioni, Samyn and Partners
Project value: £112 million
New home for the European Council in central Brussels
Project includes refurbishment of original Art Deco building and creating a new extension
Extensions iconic and complex facade requires high level of sustainable and acoustic design
Facade features reclaimed glass from across the EU