In Flanders, every day about 6 hectares of open space is being built upon. At the same time, no less than 40 percent of the material flows go to building projects. The pilot project Circular Municipality of the Future aims to drastically reduce both.


The project searches for operational models for circular re-use and for recommendations for the circular purchase of building and furnishing materials.


To put theory into practice, three different types of buildings were selected, them being a newly constructed empty store in the centre of Deinze, a former military base just outside the centre of Sijsele and a former school complex in the centre of Genk. By use of debates on site and creative workshops with associations, residents, urban planners, municipalities and sector organizations, the possibilities of a circular future for these buildings was looked upon.



former military base, Sijsele


Circular future

During these site visits and debates, David Dooghe reflected from the three scenarios, developed in the projects Urban Circular Economy, and known best practices. To formulate a circular future for these buildings, not only the potential of the buildings itself, but also their urban context and the presence of (niche) circular entrepreneurs in the municipality played a role.



The results from the three cases will be published in an inspiration book with examples and policy recommendations for local authorities and initiators, each with their own problems and opportunities.


Bond Beter Leefmilieu, the Vlaams Vereniging voor Ruimte en Planning (Flemish Association for Space and Planning) and Vereniging van Vlaamse Steden en Gemeenten (Association for Flemish cities and Municipalities), 2018, Flanders