New life for 'La chocolaterie' factory

Didier Van Den Eynde

It is always a great satisfaction to see industrial heritage buildings being rehabilitated. This is now the case for the 1850’s chocolate factory Antoine in Brussels. Since its closure in 1947, the industrial site located on the Rue du Prince Royale in Ixelles has undergone numerous reassignments before being acquired by Koramic Real Estate . The developer will now convert it into a mixed use complex of 51 high-end apartments, community facilities and offices. Herpain Entreprise has just announced the start of works.

The overall project has been designed by A2RC Architects. Their concept focuses on the industrial heritage while highlighting the most emblematic buildings. The small annexes and industrial warehouses of the site will disappear. Two new small buildings will be constructed around the interior courtyard. Their raw concrete panel facade cladding suggests the industrial past of the site while clearly distinguishing them from the old brick buildings.

The main building will be equipped with a second recessed glass facade. The arches will be enlarged over their entire height, allowing as much light as possible to pass through and referring back to the initial design of the facade.