On the campuses of the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB) and the UniversitΓ© Libre de Bruxelles (ULB) in Ixelles, Beliris, the public building expert for Brussels, is constructing the Learning and Innovation Center (LIC). This facility will offer diverse learning environments, from individual study spaces to experimentation centres, and high-tech equipment that supports knowledge exchange. As the construction nears completion, the supervisory minister of Beliris, VUB Rector Jan Danckaert, and ULB Rector Annemie Schaus are touring the site.

The final result is already visible. The building's eight storeys, including a basement, are taking shape behind a modern curtain wall, which alternates large window sections with champagne-coloured panels. At the front, a roundabout connects the first floor to the higher VUB campus via a bridge. On the opposite side, an opening has been created in building F, and construction is in full swing to complete the link. This serves as a striking symbol of the close collaboration between ULB and VUB.

Panorama van het LIC, met links de campus van de VUB en rechts de ULB campus.

Panorama of the LIC, with the VUB campus on the left and the ULB campus on the right. Photo by Greetje Van Buggenhout.

Inside, there is a hive of activity: workers from Artes Roegiers are busily finishing walls, floors, and ceilings, installing thousands of cables to transform the LIC into a smart building, and progressively completing each zone. By July, the entire building will be ready, allowing VUB to begin furnishing, setting up computers, and relocating the library.

Designed by evr-architecten, A229, Ney & Partners, and Arcadis, the LIC is conceived as an incubator for innovation and a networking hub for scientists, business experts, and social organisations. It is a place where research, exchange, and training converge. Thanks to digital tools, visitors will have access to global knowledge sources and be able to make worldwide connections.

The university building will be pioneering in every respect. It will employ the latest technologies to support student development and offer diverse learning environments: quiet spaces for individual study, rooms for collaborative work, experimentation centres for small group activities, and active learning classrooms.

Moreover, it is an almost energy-neutral building constructed from sustainable materials and with a very compact footprint to minimise heat loss. Energy consumption will be optimised through the use of sensors.

The LIC, with a total area of 9,000 mΒ², will accommodate a thousand people, of which eighty percent will be students, ten percent academic staff, and ten percent external visitors. The building is scheduled to open in early 2025.

The total budget for this state-of-the-art facility is €24,200,000, with 87% funded by Beliris and 13% by the universities.

LIC werfbezoek 2024
LIC werfbezoek 2024
LIC werfbezoek 2024