SAU obtains planning permission for FRAME, the showcase for mediapark.brussels

7 April 2020
© BAUKUNST-BRUTHERSAU obtains planning permission for FRAME, the showcase for mediapark.brussels© BAUKUNST-BRUTHER© BAUKUNST-BRUTHER© BAUKUNST-BRUTHER© BAUKUNST-BRUTHER

The Urban Development Corporation (SAU) has obtained planning permission for the construction of the FRAME building, the future showcase for mediapark.brussels.

Gilles Delforge, the director of the SAU, underlines that ‘This is an important step in the development of mediapark.brussels, where Frame will be one of the first new structures. Because of its location, at the corner of Boulevard Reyers and Rue Colonel Bourg in Schaerbeek, it will also be a flagship building in this new creative Brussels district dedicated to the media. Given the integration of various operators and multiple functions and services within the same building, it will also be a kind of “miniature mediapark.brussels” – a showcase for the new district.’

The new construction plans represent a gross area of around 9,000 m², and will be financed by the Brussels-Capital Region and the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF). The SAU plans to start work in 2021. The building should be finished and ready for its occupants to move in by 2023. 

An ecosystem building for BX1, the IHECS Academy and others

The name chosen for the building by the SAU and the main future occupants, Frame - Brussels media community, refers to the ‘framework’ provided by the building for the development of a media-oriented ecosystem. It also alludes to the shape and structure of its main façade looking towards Diamant; to the ‘window’ onto mediapark.brussels that it will be; to the camera frame in visual media; and to the frame in web design.

The building will contain a multifunctional ecosystem – a microcosm of what mediapark.brussels will ultimately be like. Among other things, it will house the Region’s French-language TV channel BX1, the IHECS Academy (the centre for continuing training attached to the Institute for Higher Social Communication Studies), screen.brussels, an innovation platform, various shared facilities and an auditorium.

Regional ambitions for architecture and the media

‘Having demolished the Reyers viaduct and transformed public spaces, we are now working to stabilise and develop the media activity that’s essential to our Region’s economic development. With Frame we are providing a multi-purpose building that’s also a showcase for the sector. The Baukunst (Brussels) - Bruther (Paris) consortium of architecture firms was eventually selected following the call for project designers organised by the SAU in 2017. The architectural competition elicited great interest: the SAU received 51 applications, proving that Brussels is of interest to architects all over the world,’ commented Pascal Smet, the Brussels Region’s Secretary of State for Urban Development.

The Minister-President of Brussels, Rudi Vervoort, welcomed the obtaining of planning permission, ‘because Frame reflects the Brussels-Capital Region’s determination to reinforce its media and communication ecosystem in the Brussels region. FRAME represents the first milestone in the development of a pioneering project which will both boost the local area’s attractiveness and offer a habitat for start-ups and developing businesses. In this new creative district, the Region will gradually develop 2,000 to 2,500 new homes, local amenities and an 8-hectare park, representing a total built area of more than 300,000 m² which will be connected to neighbouring districts.’

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