We will continue to develop Hoeilaart
The past 12 years our commune has evolved. Investments were made in the fields of environment, mobility, culture, youth and sport.
Our political opponents often say that these projects are too expensive and not for the residents. That is not correct.
The Felix Sohie Community Centre would have been cheaper if the third floor and the Molenberg room had not been built, but then our theatre and art associations would have had no place! Today, all sorts of activities are going on in this building, and there are still more joining. Every week hundreds of people meet at the theatre, in the library or on Monday afternoon with the seniors. It is really about people!
Every project that we carry out is one with a vision to the future. We build things for 70 years, not for 15 years. This is less expensive in the long term and ensures continuity for our many associations and residents.
Vision and continuity can only be achieved with a stable local government team that is both creative and at the same time experienced. We want to continue this in the coming years to fully complete the projects that are in the pipeline for you.
Our six priorities:
We keep Hoeilaart green and rural
More than 50% of Hoeilaart’s surface is green: the Sonian Forest! But we also find a lot of green in the centre and in the residential areas. This makes our commune unique. We will keep green and open space in the future and make it partly accessible via footpaths, with attention for bio-diversity and ecological balance.
This will be done in practice by converting several reserve areas and residential expansion areas, with low priority, back to green and agricultural areas.
The existing residential area will be retained; here within we will have to accommodate population growth in the coming decades.
In these zones we will deal more efficiently with the buildable area so that green spaces remain in approved allotments, we will retain a maximum of trees and forests: this will safeguard the green and forestry character of the commune.
The commune acquired more play space for both primary schools. The Sint-Clemensschool is already using it, Het Groene Dal will have extra play space in early 2019.
There is no secondary school in Hoeilaart. Due to the natural growth of the population, children from Hoeilaart will find it harder to find a place in a secondary school outside the commune in the future. That is why we want to have a secondary school set up in Hoeilaart.
The organisation of education is a task of the Flemish Community. Community education (GO!) wants to start with a first-grade secondary in public buildings from 2020 onwards.
If successful, a full high school in the commune will be accommodated at a new location in the long term.
We obviously continue to support both primary schools financially and logistically. For this we annually provide approximately € 100.000 for, among other things, bus transport to and access to the swimming pool, cultural activities, after-school care.
Every child must have equal opportunities to develop. However, some children get fewer opportunities due to a difficult family situation. That’s why we set up a Children’s Poverty Fund (Kinderarmoedefonds).
We have already implemented a scheme whereby a 50% discount is given to children from families with a limited income when participating in communal initiatives for care and sport, e.g. the holiday play schemes (Speelpleinen). We are extending this to the after-school care facilities and on homework assistance.
The memorandum from the Seniors Council indicates that there is a real need for a place where seniors can meet each other every day.
That is why we set up a Service Centre for Seniors where they can enjoy a meaningful day with coffee, play cards with friends and can eat something at a low price.
We set up a “House of the Senior”: a place where information about lifelong living and other important issues for seniors are offered proactively.
We will expand the service to people who need help by organising a tailor-made home care. We pay extra attention to the lonely elderly. We further develop grocery shopping for the elderly; this can also be done with private companies.
Today there are 30 fixed ANPR cameras in the police zone that register number plates of cars. There are also 2 mobile ANPR cameras on police cars that drive around every day.
Since the installation of the first camera in 2014, the number of burglaries has dropped drastically.
In the second semester of this year, the police found the perpetrators in 17% of the burglaries, thanks to the ANPR cameras.
In the coming years, we want to extend this camera network to places where there is nuisance. In residential areas, in the centre, around playgrounds, …. In this way, the police will have more instruments to identify the troublemakers and vandals. The public prosecutor and the judges will then have all the information to punish perpetrators of a crime correctly.
We ask the NMBS to install fixed cameras at Hoeilaart and Groenendaal train stations. These are places where troublemakers and burglars often arrive and leave from outside the commune.
Every morning it is crowded around the schools with cyclists, pedestrians and especially many cars. The many cars make the area unsafe and that is why young children are brought closer and more often to the school gate by car. This is at the expense of pedestrians and cyclists.
We will therefore give cyclists and pedestrians more space and priority, especially within a certain perimeter around the schools.
To discourage the cut-through traffic, we will make several strategic streets, such as the Nilleveldstraat or Ijzerstraat, one-way streets during the morning rush hour between 7am and 9am. In this way, cars that no longer drive into these areas, will be discouraged and in the long term we discourage them from driving through Hoeilaart altogether. Smart cameras will help to fine offenders. If one-way streets do not help, then an alternative is to simply close these streets along one side during the morning rush hour.
We provide a bus that connects the residential areas with the stations and the city centre during the day. We do not do this on a communal level but are going to use a private company for this.
Tourism in Groenendaal
The Groenendaal station environment is sloppy and outdated. This will become a tourist gateway and a mobility hub by 2024.
We do this by:
Restoring the station with the help of Flemish heritage subsidies. There will certainly be a catering business, a bicycle rental point, public toilets, a digital train counter and a pick-up point for parcels.
By 2021 there will be a large parking lot around and next to the station for 112 bicycle shelters and 270 cars. NMBS will finance the construction of the parking.
During the week, the parking is mainly used by commuters and visitors to the catering businesses.
At the weekend, visitors to the Sonian Forest will be able to easily leave their bicycle, car and / or horse trailer to get into the forest from there.
Groenendaal will also be the starting point for the bicycle highways to Brussels and the neighbouring communes.