Bruxelles ma (pou)belle

Brussels is known for many things. Sometimes positive, sometimes much less, but they do not make our city less of an icon. The international icon of beer, chocolate, French fries... But there is more than gastronomy alone. Architecture and culture also have a prominent place in Brussels public space. Many envy us for these successes, while others come to admire them during their studies, a city trip, or as a lifetime resident. There is, however, something that no one can envy us. The cleanliness of our streets.

Every evening, Brusselers set out their rubbish bags. Every day, collectors of Bruxelles-Propreté pick them up. But in the meantime, 12 hours pass by. In these 12 hours, your neighbours have also set out their rubbish and vermin have nibbled in your rubbish bag to feast on your pizza leftovers. And that is the best case scenario. Because sometimes someone makes a mistake and instead of PMD (paper, metal and drink packaging), cardboard is left outside to stay there for several days. The result is a dirty street.

But there is a solution. Whether it concerns your personal comfort, the environment, the employees of Bruxelles-Propreté or even people with reduced mobility, underground containers are the solution. With - Vooruit we want underground containers to be installed everywhere in Brussels. That would not only make life easier for all of us, but would also result in a cleaner city.

Discover all the advantages of these containers by clicking on one of the themes below. Convinced? Then fill in this form. Let us know if you agree with this solution for a cleaner city and a healthier environment. Talk to your family, friends, the people around you and even strangers about it. Together we will convert Bruxelles poubelle in Bruxelles ma belle. From trash Brussels to fresh Brussels.

I like the idea of an underground container in my street.



Brussels cleanliness employees


People with reduced mobility

Brussels residents

  • Reduce waste incineration

    Every year, almost 500,000 tonnes of waste are incinerated in Brussels. That is slightly more than half of all waste. Although the environmental impact of incineration is neutral, there are other, better options for the environment.

    Recycling, for example. In fact, for optimal waste management, a scale has been established. The priority level is prevention. Not producing waste is the best solution of all. Next comes reuse to extend the life of what already exists. In third place: waste separation and recycling. Today, glass, PMD, cardboard, green waste... almost everything can be recycled. Finally comes waste incineration, preferably with energy recovery, but that is not always an option. The last resort is dumping waste in landfill sites.

    To make our city exemplary and to be able to live in good conditions on our planet, waste separation is the solution. With underground containers, PMD, cardboard, food waste and household waste can be found next to each other. In this way, the four largest waste categories will be in the same place in your street.

  • Promote recycling

    Our city already recycles 40% of the collected waste. This is a plus for the Brusselers. But it also means that 60% of waste still ends up in an incinerator or in less environmentally friendly installations.

    Underground containers make waste separation easier for everyone. You would no longer need to store huge rubbish bags or cardboard stacks to a specific day. You could get rid of your waste a few metres from home in the container and that's it. One container for each waste type. You will no longer need specific rubbish bags for each waste type. Are you going to the underground, the supermarket or picking up your children from school? Then you can just drop the cardboard and some magazines in the container. The environment will be grateful.

  • Reducing the number of trucks on our streets

    Brussels has a very creative definition of mobility. Escaping traffic jams is impossible, cars are everywhere and nothing moves. Imagine driving behind a waste collection truck during the morning rush hour. Besides testing your patience, the rather invasive smell will bring the mobility problem even more alive.

    In the Brussels-Capital Region, 320 waste collection trucks (from Bruxelles-Propreté alone) drive on our streets. At least half of them occupy our streets every day to collect waste. These vehicles cover thousands of kilometres on all the streets of our capital. However, intelligent containers could indicate where and when they should be deployed. That way, a lot less of these trucks would be driving around and pollution would be significantly reduced on “less useful” routes along streets with only a few rubbish bags.

  • Reducing waste in waterways

    The life of waste is full of unexpected twists and turns. When waste is thrown into an already overflowing rubbish bag, it often ends up in waterways or in the sewage system. That makes it very difficult to recover that waste and even more so to give it a second life.

    It all comes together and ends up in waste cities in the sea. Let's fight waste flows in our seas and oceans from the cities. Underground containers throughout Brussels also serve as rubbish bins if you want to throw away the package of your favourite candy bar or your can of soda on a sunny day.

  • Discovering a clean and beautiful city

    Brussels and tourists love each other. Sometimes they come to spend a few hours here. Sometimes they change their lives and come to live there. But the postcard image à la Mick Jagger with rubbish is not an image to share with family and friends.

    Thanks to clearly labelled containers, everyone can contribute to a clean Brussels. Nobody throws rubbish on the ground when bins are everywhere.

  • Rubbish bins that blend into the landscape

    Rubbish bags on the street are not a lovely sight, even less so when they are ripped open. That is not the image of Brussels you want to imprint on your mind.

    Underground containers blend into the landscape. You only need 6 meters to place 4 containers next to each other. Only a small part of them, the one where you throw the waste, can be seen.

  • No more backaches and other accidents

    Bruxelles-Propreté is a service with a lot of employees and with one occupational accident a day. Considering the heavy workload, this is not surprising.

    Thanks to underground containers, backaches will belong to the past and there will be no need to lift other heavy loads. Everything is done with cranes. It does not seem easy to empty 5 m³ manually. Employees will be given a transition period and training to learn how to use the new equipment.

  • Better organisation of rounds

    Underground containers would put an end to the endless and sometimes very intense or slightly less intense collection rounds. Residents do not always have the same amount of waste to set out. The quantity can vary greatly between two rounds. This leads to irregular workload. But the collection trucks nevertheless drive down all the streets and consume the same amount of fuel, regardless of the amount of rubbish bags outside.

    The underground containers are “intelligent”. A sensor can measure how full they are. This means collectors will not have to go everywhere to empty half-full containers yet. They will empty them at the right moment. That saves fuel, time and money.

  • Pavements and clean streets

    Brussels’ pavements are very diverse. Some of them are wider than others, some are more comfortable than others. Some of them have rubbish bins blocking the way, others do not.

    Underground containers would allow all pedestrians to use the pavements optimally. These containers would be strategically located, for example, in place of a parking place. In other words, pavements that become too small twice a week due to the bin waste collection will belong to the past.

  • No more waste storage

    Storing waste can be a challenge in Brussels. In apartments, you cannot always place several bins to separate the waste correctly. Odours and vermin sometimes also make it impossible to store rubbish. Also for shop owners, waste storage can be a real challenge. They often receive parcels from their suppliers and have to store them until the next collection round. When a clothes shop receives a new collection, this sometimes results in entire rooms full of boxes.

    Thanks to underground containers, shop owners and employees could dispose of this waste every day from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. They would no longer have to store it or wait until they finally can set out the waste. So no more worries when eating mussels or aromatic meals. The same or next day, you could simply leave the leftovers in the container. Indeed, no more odours and huge rubbish bags in your apartment. And hello waste separation and clean streets.

  • Reclaiming daily activities

    No one likes taking out the rubbish. But if you are in a wheelchair or have poor motor control, it becomes a real challenge.

    With underground containers, you could choose which day you want to take out the rubbish. A great advantage and a solution to avoid having to carry heavy bags. Instead, you could empty small rubbish bags into the designated container.

  • Easier to separate waste

    Waste separation has become a good habit for all Brusselers. But in a small apartment, it is a difficult task. Rubbish bags quickly pile up on your balcony, terrace or even right in the kitchen.

    Thanks to underground containers, you no longer have to wait until the bag is full. You can regularly leave a few cans of soft drinks, other PMD waste or cardboard straight in the container. You would no longer have to worry about storage or odour issues.

  • Fewer vermin

    Rats, pigeons, cats... Rubbish bags on the street are ripped open for many reasons. Some of them are cuter than others, but that does not take away the problem.

    An additional advantage of underground containers is that animals cannot enter them. In this way, vermin will spread much less in the neighbourhood.

  • More comfortable cycle lanes

    Brusselers are thoughtful towards rubbish collectors by placing their rubbish as close to the street as possible. In this way, collectors can pick up the rubbish more easily.

    Unfortunately, cycle lanes along these roads are often flooded with rubbish bags. A smooth bike ride then becomes difficult and even dangerous. Underground containers can be easily located and would be implemented in such a way that road users, pedestrians and cyclists can move freely.