Master plan for the center of Strombeek near Brussels

Location Strombeek-Bever, Belgium
Year 2012 - 2016
Status Completed, competition, first prize
Client Municipality of Grimbergen, Belgium
Program Urban plan for the center of Strombeek
Team Jola Starzak, Dawid Strębicki, Zofia Krzykawska, Zofia Piotrowska, Maria Aglaja Dau, Katarzyna Leśniewska, Maciej Sokolnicki, Łukasz Gać, Olga Płaczek, Damian Kąkol, Maria Jose Company Ibanez
Participation project Laura Muyldermans, Brussels, Belgium, Wouter De Raeve, Brussels, Belgium, De bende, Rotterdam, Netherlands


The main aim of the new urban plan for Strombeek’s centre, a town of 12 thousand inhabitants that is closely connected to Brussels, was the public space revival with a particular focus on citygenic character of five chosen places. These spaces are: (1) the square next to a dynamically operating cultural centre built in the 60s, (2) the square with a church and the departing streets (here is also a road hub) (3) the area where the school is located (4) the housing area and (5) the green area with closed monastery. All these places, along with the institutions located there, serve as social attractors inspiring many different activities, and thanks to the short distance between each other, they create a “radioactive” effect of stimulating city life.


One of the most important features of the new urban plan was to seek and bring into light these qualities of the space which already exist and are of intrinsic value to the city. Therefore, for example, instead of relocating the school, the architects decided to rebuild it taking into consideration current citygenic functions performed by such an institution. All other spaces were treated in a similar understanding as hybrid city forms and mixed elements of the whole, where their specificity needs to be discovered and acted upon.