New life for the Sacred Heart church and presbytery in Ghent

19 May 2021

The Heilig Hart church and presbytery in Ghent Dampoort have a new future. The architectural firm De Smet Vermeulen was chosen as designer in collaboration with Tractebel and Juxta. The church will become a meeting place, while the presbytery will remain a place for small-scale neighborhood activities. 

After extensive consultations with the neighborhood and in collaboration with the urban development company Sogent and the city of Ghent, the design team was able to present its final plan, which includes a solidarity neighborhood restaurant, a neighborhood kitchen and a neighborhood lounge, as well as a small-scale activity space. In addition, the church will benefit from a new floor where larger activities can take place.

With their plan, the architects want to focus on cross-connections between the square, the church, and the green to bring all the neighborhood groups together. By opening up the side walls and placing glass walls, the visual connection will be established while keeping the original size of the church visible and tangible. Tractebel (Team Buildings Ghent) supports De Smet Vermeulen architects (HDSPV) for stability, techniques, acoustics and energy performance reports.

For the renovation of the presbytery and the church, Sogent can count on a support of 800,000 euros from the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF).

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