|Parc de Bruxelles (in French)|
Warandepark (in Dutch)
Brussels' Park monumental fountain with the Palace of the Nation in the background
|Area||13.1 ha (32 acres)|
|Public transit access||Parc/Park metro station|
The Parc de Bruxelles (French; "Brussels' Park") or Warandepark (help·info) (Dutch), is the largest urban public park in the centre of Brussels. The area of the rectangular park is 13.1 ha (32 acres). The main entrance is on the north side, opposite the Belgian House of Parliament (or Palace of the Nation). An avenue leads to the main pond, from which three other avenues offer views of three important places in Brussels: the Palace of Justice, the Royal Palace and the Place du Trône/Troonplein.
The park is surrounded by the Place des Palais/Paleizenplein to the south, Rue Royale/Koningsstraat to the west, Rue de la Loi/Wetstraat to the north and Rue Ducale/Hertogstraat to the east. It is served by Parc/Park metro station on line 1 and 5 of the Brussels metro.
Brussels' Park lies on the site of the gardens of the former Palace of Coudenberg, which had been used since the Middle Ages as a hunting ground by the Dukes of Brabant. It was designed and laid out between 1776 and 1783 in a Neoclassical style by the French architect Gilles-Barnabé Guimard and the Austrian landscape architect Joachim Zinner.
In 1793, French revolutionary troops destroyed the sculptures and overthrew the busts of the Roman emperors which adorned the park. During the Belgian Revolution, which led to the separation of the Southern Netherlands, the park serves as a refuge for the army of the United Kingdom of the Netherlands.
Since the 19th century, the park has been surrounded by a double row of lime trees and a monumental fence designed by Tilman-François Suys. In the 20th century, the park was fitted with Art Deco lamp posts. In the 1930s, a bunker was built underneath it, connected by tunnels to the House of Parliament. The park was most recently renovated between 2000 and 2002.
Buildings and monuments
Brussels' Park is home to several public buildings and monuments:
- the Théâtre Royal du Parc (Dutch: Parktheater), a theatre built in 1782
- the Vauxhall, a meeting and concert venue, built in the 1780s
- the wooden kiosk of the Vauxhall, built in 1913
- the cast iron bandstand, built in 1841
- the main pond, constructed in 1855
- the octagonal pond, constructed in 1780
- several sculptures and fountains, created by sculptors including Laurent Delvaux, Gilles-Lambert Godecharle, Jean-Michel Folon and Thomas Vinçotte
Peter the Great monument
Bandstand by Jean-Pierre Cluysenaar
One of the park's Art Deco lamp posts, made in Paris by A. Durenne
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