European Commission: A super day nursery

The 320-bed crèche of the European Commission, located on Boulevard Clovis in Brussels, was starting to get saturated, because of the expansion of the European Union. The Commission therefore decided to create an extension, in the former so-called WALI or Compagnie des Wagons-Lits building (5000 m²). GLOBAL was responsible for the full assignment, from the first stroke of the pencil to the final lick of paint.

Challenges encountered

Connecting two buildings

A connection had to be made between the old WALI building, which had high ceilings, and a more recent building, located inside an island. Stability problems required work to be carried out in phases, floor by floor, area by area.

Design on a child’s scale

GLOBAL had to devise the project, taking account of the special purpose of the premises. This required documentation work and challenging standard approaches. GLOBAL created large terraces, thinking about sunlight, so that the children could get some air.

Take account of regulatory requirements

A crèche is subject to numerous restrictions and rules which weigh heavy on every decision, such as the installation of lifts or skylights.

Steps followed

Follow-up from A-Z

Studies, sketches, building permits, working drawings and tender documents, monitoring works and acceptance of works. From design to completion, the task was carried out from A-Z by GLOBAL.

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Markers

The Design team endeavoured to give an identity to the 4 floors. Each entity was given their own name, number and bright, cheerful colour.

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Results obtained

A super-crèche

A new façade and new corridors were created with a view to facilitating internal traffic. GLOBAL decided to install the offices fronting onto the street and to keep the inside of the island, which is calmer, for the 16 crèche units.