The House of the Forest will be the main information and education point welcoming visitors to the Sonian Forest. It will also provide a base for forest walks for both individuals and groups.
Run in partnership with Brussels Environment, this future low-energy building will play an educational role and act as a window into eco-friendly living. It will offer a range of activities to complement the existing options available in Brussels.
This new space will be located at the end of the ring and on the edge of the forest. The area falls under the plans to renovate the ring and so, in order to maintain the forest’s original charm, the House of the Forest needs to blend in perfectly.
The House of the Forest will be built mainly from wood and will be accessible to people with reduced mobility. There will be a reception area, a multipurpose room, toilets and spare office space. The area will be partly covered, opening out onto the ring and offering a relaxing place to take a break.
The building will serve as an exemplary model for demonstrating how to limit humankind’s impact on the forest. Low-energy materials and sustainable construction techniques have been chosen to reduce its environmental impact, including:
- timber construction;
- an educational roof with rainwater harvesting;
- waterless urinals, and toilets that flush with rainwater;
- effective insulation and heating provided by a heat pump;
- controlled mechanical ventilation with heat recovery and night-time cooling;
- protection from overheating thanks to an overhanging roof.