Arpayge | Bureau d’études, d’architecture paysagère, d’urbanisme et d’aménagement du territoire.


This former site to be redeveloped (SAR) located in the dense Bomel district, near Namur railway station, has been the subject of a comprehensive redevelopment including the transformation of the former slaughterhouses into a cultural centre, a real estate operation of two buildings and the development of the site.

The development of the site was the final point in the conversion of the premises and made it possible to finalise the creation of a particularly welcoming place for the population of the district and elsewhere.

Arpayge was appointed by the City of Namur to landscape the site. Conceived as a mixed public space: the urban space and the green space park are open to the district. The project was developed and evolved through a participatory approach. The inhabitants of the district, local actors and the City services contributed to the development process.

The first step was to break down the surrounding walls of the site in order to open it up to the city, to establish cross-sectoral links and connections with the district.

The heritage dimension of the site and the principle of circular economy were taken into account from the outset. In this respect, the old stone paving stones were reused on the site, blocks of stone from the surrounding walls were used to build the gabion structuring walls. This allowed the economy of their evacuation and the maintenance on the site of heritage elements in recycled form.

The theme of the playground – Water and mills – is explained by the presence, under the site of the former slaughterhouses, of the vaulted watercourse the Houyoux and its rich history in the past of the City of Namur.

In terms of conviviality, the playground, the picnic area, the esplanade with bleachers and the lawn are places for convivial living, exchanges and sharing. They are a great success with children and adults alike. Children come from faraway neighbourhoods to play there, as the site is not crossed by cars.

The project also aimed to provide a setting in the cultural center for the organisation of open-air events: parties, shows, exhibitions, workshops, etc. The esplanade and the stands make it possible.

The plant structure (trees, shrubs, grasses, perennials) and the lawn contribute to the fight against heat islands and provide areas of shade.

Transversality is ensured by gentle traffic that is accessible to people with reduced mobility, linking the site to the three neighbouring streets. The paths have been designed to make the site accessible to people with reduced mobility. Some paths are infiltrating. The playground is accessible to disabled children.

Location: Namur (Belgium)
Public contracting authority: City of Namur Land Registry
Commissioned as project designer
In association with Arcadis Belgium
Project implementation: 2013-2018