Brussels Courthouse, also known as the Brussels Courts of Law, is the most important building in Belgium and the largest building built in the 19th century and currently the largest courthouse in the world.
The building measures 160x150m. The dome, which weighs 24 thousand tons, is 104m above the ground. With hundreds of courtrooms, the Brussels Palace of Justice is bigger than St. Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican.
When the King of Belgium wanted to build a palace of justice, he first opened a competition, but he did not like even one of the contest results. He hired an architect of his choice and asked him to start construction. Between 1866 and 1883, the building was erected by the famous architect Joseph Poelaert on the hill called Galgenberg in Brussels, where criminals sentenced to death were hanged in the Middle Ages.
During its construction, most of the surrounding houses had to be demolished, the owners didn’t like it at all, even the word architect became a painful word, but the Belgian government somehow satisfied the owners with compensation or money.
The imposing building, which gives you chills when you look at it, was set on fire during the German retreat during World War II and the palace of justice was badly damaged. During the restoration work at the time, the building was generally repaired and the dome was rebuilt two and a half meters higher.
Today, the restoration of the walls and the dome has been ongoing since 2003. We can see restoration materials around the dome. It is rumored that the restoration company has been disconnected from the Palace of Justice and it is being discussed who will remove the restoration materials.
Brussels Infantry Memorial
Just in front of the Brussels Palace of Justice, there is an infantry monument looking sadly over the city of Brussels. Dedicated to the Belgian soldiers who lost their lives during World War 1 and World War 2.
Designed by Edouard Vereycken, the monument bears the text “To the soldiers who lost their lives for their country…”. After viewing the monument, don’t forget to enjoy the view of Brussels. You can take the elevators from Rue des Minimes to the monument.