Ban on late-night drinking in Brussels’ pedestrian zone


To combat anti-social behaviour in the central pedestrian zone in Brussels, the city is testing out a ban on drinking in the street after midnight

Move along

A ban on late-night drinking on the street in Brussels’ central pedestrian zone will come into force on 1 February for a trial period of six months. Brussels-City has approved a decree stating that “the consumption of alcoholic beverages in public spaces, in any quantity, is prohibited from midnight to 6.00”.

The proposed ban was first announced last month by mayor Philippe Close (PS), who wanted it to be enforced before the end of the year. The measure will instead begin on 1 February and will initially apply for six months, when its effectiveness will be evaluated.

The ban will apply to people drinking in public on the street. It will not apply to bars, which can still serve drinks on their terraces. It will also be waived in the event of any major festive or sporting event authorised or organised by the City of Brussels.

Offenders face a fine of €350. Unlike a similar ban around the Flagey neighbourhood, there does not appear to be a grace period for the trial run.

“I do not want a city that stops at 22.00,” said close. “I do not believe in that at all. Brussels is a cosmopolitan, 24-hour city, but that has to be managed.”

Photo ©Jeremy Seto/flickr