Fuse nightclub allowed to reopen under strict conditions, possible relocation

After a major backlash following the closure of one of Brussels’ most iconic nightclubs, Fuse was allowed to reopen this weekend under certain conditions.

But these conditions, outlined by the competent authority, the Brussels Environment, are so stringent that the club’s management say their future is still uncertain.

Under the new conditions, Fuse can only be open two days a week, can host up to 90 events per year, and is only allowed to play loud music on the first and first floors (noise on the second floor). is not allowed). It can only be open from 23.00 to 7.00 in the morning.

Fuse is also being asked to fix the noise pollution problem within two years or move away from where Belgium’s longest-running techno club has been for nearly 30 years.

Fuse has already invested heavily in sound insulation over the years, and Alya Dirix, a spokesperson for the Brussels Nightlife Council, said: “Additional work will likely cost millions of euros.” said.

Brussels Environment said it wanted to strike the right balance between the economic and cultural importance of the popular nightclub and the well-being of the local population. “

Only one person, who recently moved into the neighborhood, has complained about noise, according to the club. Other residents in the neighborhood say they understand that buying a house next to a nightclub creates noise and have never had a problem.

The Brussels Nightlife Council has taken steps to protect clubs such as Fuse from closing, citing complaints from people deliberately moving to the area, which they already know has a bustling nightlife scene. It says new regulations are needed.

“This time it’s Fuse and next time it’s another club,” said Dirix. “We need a legal framework.”

Brussels mayor Philippe Close (PS) called for a “lasting solution” and said “the law needs to be reviewed”.

The Brussels state secretary of heritage Pascal Smet ( – Vooruit) likewise calls for new regulations.

Fuse’s management announced that the club was about to open under these tough new conditions, but that it would be difficult to operate profitably.

For one, being only open two days a week means you can’t take advantage of special holidays.

Having to close at 7.00 also discourages clubgoers who come in significant numbers from abroad.

“We plan to reopen, but the criteria proposed are not easy. They are very strict,” artistic director Stephen Van Bell told RTBF.

“We will try and evaluate to see if it is sustainable, both economically and in terms of customer experience.”

On the other hand, noise-conscious neighbors are also dissatisfied with the strict conditions.

“My client is completely disgusted with the noise and nuisance from Fuse,” said the neighbor’s attorney. “I don’t think he will be able to withstand the situation he’s being put in now.”

But other residents are quick to point out that, like them, the man chose to buy a home near a nightclub.Fuse has been in business in the same location for nearly 30 years. increase.

Satisfied with the result is Brussels’ Environment Minister Alain Maron (Ecolo).

He expressed confidence that steps would be taken to find a more structural solution and suggested setting up a task force to help move Hughes elsewhere in Brussels within two years. He then announced

“I am pleased that the dialogue between all parties has allowed the party to reopen.

That structural solution might be relocation.

The Brussels environment will not be able to do the work necessary to meet stricter noise standards without jeopardizing the stability of the building, so Hughes expects that under these new conditions within the next two years He said he was likely to move.

“While Hughes sees the Brussels Environment’s first decision as a complete closure, the aim was not to close the facility, but to reduce the noise levels experienced by residents. Therefore, these adaptations are necessary. ‘ said the official.

“This decision was made at a time when discussions with Fuse began in 2014. [located in a residential area in the Marolles] Following the periodic exceeding of noise standards. However, public address ordinances require those responsible for facilities open to the public to take necessary measures to ensure that the noise associated with their operation does not harm the tranquility or health of local residents. “

Some residents have expressed concern over the club’s relocation and closure. Without it, there are concerns about the economic impact on areas lacking culture and nightlife.

Belgium’s longest-running nightclub of its type, Fuse is a destination for tourists as well as locals, many of whom consider the club a source of pride for the neighborhood.

Fuse is celebrating its 30th anniversary at its current location, and it will likely be its last.

In the meantime, it remains to be seen if they will be able to make enough profit to fund their relocation over the next two years by operating under stricter standards, and what their neighbors are going to do through the court system. ,still unknown.

Another member of the Nightlife Federation said Hughes didn’t even have anywhere to go.

“Actually, this decision is not a decision to open, but it does mean the closure of Hughes because the law prohibits the opening of commercial facilities in industrial zones. I don’t even know,” Lorenzo Serra said. RTBF.

“We’re not forcing ordinary nightclubs that don’t respect anything to shut down. We’re talking about techno halls of fame, cultural institutions that program and make us proud across borders, social and social.” It is a place that serves a strategic and structural role.

“It is the 21st century opera house that is being forced to close against public opinion. 70,000 people have signed a petition to save the charity. This decision is tragic for Brussels.” Fuse nightclub allowed to reopen under strict conditions, possible relocation

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