New home for EU Council and European Council ready for use

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From the beginning of 2017, the Europa building becomes the home of the two institutions representing the EU member states: the Council of the European Union and the European Council.  

Jeppe Tranholm-Mikkelsen, Secretary general of the Council, said about the building:

“The Europa is the house of the member states where leaders and ministers will meet to shape the future of  the European Union. It  provides  our two institutions, the European Council and the Council of the EU, the additional space and modern facilities they need. It will give more flexibility and efficiency for our organisation of more than 6000 meetings per year.”

Located at the heart of the European district, the Europa building combines a new part, an innovative lantern-shaped structure designed by the consortium of Samyn and Partners (Belgium), Studio Valle Progettazioni (Italy) and Buro Happold (UK), with a renovated section, block A of the Résidence Palace, a partly listed Art Deco complex designed by architect Michel Polak in 1922.

The Europa was built in line with the principles of sustainable development. The building was designed  with modern systems to regulate lighting, humidity and temperature. It also includes green features such as solar panels or a rain water collection system to supply the sanitary facilities.

The construction of  the Europa was decided in 2004 by the European Presidents and Prime ministers against the background first of the enlargement and second of the decision to host all European summits in Brussels rather than in member countries. Since then, the Council also started to host multilateral and bilateral summits and, as part of the institutional evolution of the EU since 2009, the offices of the permanent President of the European Council.

The building is already in partial use and will enter into full operation at the beginning of 2017.

On Saturday 10 December 2016, Europa will open its doors to the public, primarily from the host city and country.  Almost 2000 citizens have registered for a guided tour of the building, before EU leaders and ministers discover it themselves next year. All tours are now full. There are limited opportunities for media to cover the event. All inquiries to do so must be made in advance to the Council press office.