Cities and economies are in transition worldwide. The social, environmental and economic challenges that urban areas currently face are enormous. That is why the Public Waste Agency of Flanders (OVAM) issued a call to submit proposals to research these opportunities, asking us to “ investigate urban metabolism as a carrier for a sustainable transition to a circular economy in the Flemish-Brussels metropolitan region. ”

FABRICations, Circle Economy (CE) and LoUIsE – BATir (ULB) selected proposal identifies and analyzes these circular opportunities is based on the ambition to valorize existing knowledge and translate it into a spatial impact, thus identifying opportunities for local stakeholders.

The original objectives were to question how it is possible to use the urban metabolism framework in order to implement and make the principles of circular economy in the Brussels Metropolitan Region operational. The idea was not to limit this study to data collection and analysis exercises but also to see how the metabolic flows at a regional scale could provide some insights at the local scale. In addition, it was important to create a vision and a narrative behind the metabolic flows assessment and the identification and proposal of circular economy strategies for local stakeholders.  This is why FABRICations identified three specific sites all along the canal zone of Brussels, namely: Birmingham, Masui and Budawhere it was possible to arrange a new metabolic strategy.

Location: Brussels, Belgium

Program: Circular economy strategies in Brussels and its Region

Year: 2015

Commissioner: OVAM

Partners: ULB, Circle Economy

Design Directors: Eric Frijters, Olv Klijn

Project Manager: Miriam Ram

Team: Caterina Vetrugno, Coralie Gmür, Lloyd Martin, Monika Novkovikj

Animal waste as a new economy in Birmingham

Circular strategies for the Abattoirs of Anderlecht

Modal Shift in Birmingham

Reconnecting city and industry in Vergotedok

A biorefinery for wastewater treatment in Buda


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