Grote Markt

For many years in the twentieth century, Antwerp’s Grote Markt (Large Market) was used as — you guessed it — a parking lot for automobiles. But now the cars have been banned so we can safely admire the historic Guild Houses without being run over or poisoned by exhaust fumes.

It turns out that the original Guild Houses on this site were destroyed by fire in 1576. They were rebuilt in Flemish renaissance style but were further decorated in the 19th century.

Jump on your bike

In the summer of 2012, off in one corner of the Grote Markt, the city council set up this attractive square column of cloth posters showing a mother and child on bicycles. There was a slogan at the top that read:

Go voluit voor de zomer.
Spring op je fiets en beleef nog meer in ‘t stad.

As far as I can figure out, this means:

Go flat out for the summer.
Jump on your bike and experience even more in the city.

Near the Grote Markt

My photos in this post are from 2012. I revised the text in 2019.

See more posts on Antwerp, Belgium.
See more posts on the pernicious effects of cars.

2 thoughts on “Grote Markt”

  1. I would gladly agree a main square should not be with cars! we did the same in my capital city of Vannes just left it like Pl de la République in Paris, a circular way around it but the center is all pedestrian.

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