Like most of the communes in the southeast quadrant of the Brussels-Capital Region, Auderghem is bountifully endowed with nature. The commune owns the privilege of sitting on the edge of the enchanting Sonian Forest or Forêt de Soignes. One third of its surface area of 10.52 square kilometers bathes in green beauty.
Not only is it blessed by Mother Nature. Auderghem also boasts a well-preserved historical heritage which includes the Rouge-Cloître Abbey, the Val Duchesse Priory, Château de la Solitude, Château Sainte-Anne, and many more castles and villas.
Auderghem is a highly residential commune with a vibrant commercial life. Elegant neighborhoods are located near the forest while modest neighborhoods are found in the more urbanized parts of the commune. Commercial activities are confined to a few areas such as Chaussée de Wavre, Herrmann-Debroux, and Boulevard du Souverain.
Based on figures from 2017, Auderghem has 33,313 inhabitants representing close to three percent of Brussels’ regional population. Almost 30 percent of them belong to a different nationality. While the majority of the commune’s foreign residents are French, Auderghem is also home to the largest Japanese community in the Brussels region. The only Japanese international school in Belgium is located in the commune.
The Auderghemois are among the more economically stable residents of the Brussels region. Although low income and reliance on social assistance apply to some households particularly in the western section of the commune, the population’s socio-economic profile generally ranges from middle class to extremely well-off.
Despite a relatively prosperous environment, insufficient supply of social housing remains a problem for the disadvantaged residents of Auderghem. Poor living conditions in some of the commune’s western neighborhoods also demand more government attention.
For more than 40 years, Auderghem has been the bastion of regionalistic social liberals from political party Democratic, Federalist, and Independent (DéFI) formerly known as FDF. After the 2012 communal elections, DéFI comprised the council majority with local party Samen which was composed of representatives from the Open Flemish Liberals and Democrats (Open Vld), the Christian Democratic and Flemish party (CD&V), the Socialist Party Differently (sp.a), and non-party leaders. The Ecolo-Groen formation, the Socialist Party (PS), and the Humanist Democratic Center (cdH) spoke for the opposition.
The most significant projects of the commune in the last six years include the construction of the Delta Hospital, the renovation of several schools and nurseries, and the expansion of kindergarten schools. However, the commune could exert more effort in implementing sustainable development projects and providing more safe lanes for bicyclists.
The fate of Auderghem in the next six years will depend on which party will prevail in the communal elections on October 14, 2018. DéFI candidates will once again face off with other representatives from Samen, Ecolo-Groen, PS, cdH which is campaigning under Liste citoyenne 1160, and MR which is running back to back this time with Open Vld.