City of Brussels considers the idea of taxing the Federal Government

The image of the Palais de Justice surrounded by scaffolding seems to haunt every person living in Brussels. 

At the beginning of August, the Minister of Justice Koen Geens (CD & V) confirmed in the columns of the DH newspaper that the renovation of the neo-classical building would not be completed before 2040, and that the scaffolding would not be removed before 2032. These dates made the alderman of Urbanism of the City of Brussels, Geoffroy Coomans of Brachene (MR), rather uncomfortable.


Coomans de Brachène therefore has a strong wish to speed up the process, even if he uses unorthodox methods to nudge the Federal Government. “Our will is to remove the illegal scaffolding that devalue the facades for years, even before 2032. How? by taxing, where appropriate, those located on the public space,” said Coomans de Brachène.

The implications: Part of the scaffolding of the courthouse is indeed on the territory of the City of Brussels, on the public pathway. Which could be a subtle way of saying he wants to tax the Federal Government.

In addition, the alderman confirms that the City of Brussels proposes new ways to improve the image of the courthouse, after the development of a plan discussed with the Poelaert Foundation and the Régie des bâtiments.

Some of these initiatives are: setting a UNESCO heritage plaque on the building’s facade, a better regulated parking around the palace, the installation of Horeca (acronym for the association of hotels, restaurants and caterers) on the upper terraces of the palace. The Régie des bâtiments, owner of the premises, must still give its final opinion.