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Friday, 17 February 2012

Is Uplace at Machelen a threat to aviation?

Controversial development plans for a shopping centre cum cinema complex at Machelen outside Brussels are meeting opposition from a new quarter. Belgium's aviation authorities have now warned that a planned tower could pose a danger to aviation.
The Flemish authorities have already issued a building permit for Uplace, but have failed to consult the aviation authorities the Federal Government now warns. After complaints from local retailers the development that includes a 90 metre high tower is now also causing worries in aviation circles. Belgium's Aviation Directorate General believes that the tower could pose a danger to aviation. If built the tower would probably necessitate a rerouting of flight routes to and from Brussels Airport.
Belgian Transport Secretary Melchior Wathelet (Francophone Christian democrat) has voiced the concerns in a letter to Flemish Planning Minister Philippe Muyters (nationalist), but he insists that the aviation authorities had sufficient time to look at the plans.
Uplace still requires an environmental licence.