Brussels City Hall to manage Royal Circus after renovation

The City of Brussels has asked for an “independent report” from the Vincotte inspection and certification agency and the Fire Department before starting renovation works on the Cirque Royal (Royal Circus) concert hall, the spokesman of Mayor Philippe Close told the Belgian news agency, Belga, on Wednesday.

The municipality will then manage the concert hall so as to “comply with the decision of the court”.

The Cirque Royal is the subject of a legal battle over a contract to manage the concert hall. In late 2016, the City of Brussels had decided to withdraw the management of the hall from the Botanique cultural complex and award it to the Brussels Expo non-profit organization from July 1, 2017. However, the Brussels Court of Appeal suspended the contract on grounds of presumed bias and conflict of interest.

In early July, the municipality handed over the management of the hall to Brussels Expo on an interim basis, but the Council of State held that this violated the authority of the Appeal Court ruling.

The director of Botanique, Annie Valentini, reiterated her proposal to manage the Royal Circus until the trial judge rules on the merits of the case, Le Soir reported in its Wednesday edition. The Brussels daily added that the judge’s ruling was not expected before June 2018.

However, City Hall indicated that it would respect the decision of the court and run the concert hall after the renovation works. “These works are necessary,” added the spokesperson of Mayor Close. “The timing will depend on the conclusions of the report on the state of the hall.”

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