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Listing and Renovation of the buildings

The Passage du Nord was listed in 1993. The listing protects its external facades, its shop-fronts, its interior facades, its glazed roof and its floor.
Of course, the main effect of the listed-building status is to protect the remaining original architectural features, as any work done to them must comply with the original specification and designs. The Royal Belgian Commission for Historic Monuments and Sites in the Brussels-Capital Region must thus approve any work which will affect the listed features of the building, but, in return, the approval of work by the Commission gives the owner access to subsidies from the regional government.
Since 1994, the Commission has approved the complete renovation of the Passage du Nord’s roofs, interior friezes and external facades.
 
In 2000, a major shop front restoration programme got underway. Over a period of 16 years, all shop fronts were refurbished in line with the shopkeepers' wishes by using the same materials as the original shop front.  
 
At the same time, the floor covering of the Passage du Nord was completely replaced. Comblanchien stone, which was the original material used in the Passage construction, replaced the tiling which had been put there in the sixties.  The slabs were laid according to the original plans using an old photo which confirmed that the work done followed these plans.
The two columns at the entrance of the Passage, on the side of the boulevard Adolphe Max set up at the start of the 20th century, were carefully reconstructed in 2005 to look like the original in order to recreate the architectural consistency of the entrance.  
 
Lastly, in the period 2017-2018, the inner façades were repainted in their original colours, following a detailed survey. The caryatids have been completely restored by reconstituting the missing or damaged elements, treating the cracks and repainting the structure. The glazing was reinforced and new transparent, plexiglass tiles replaced the old tiles which had become almost opaque.
 
During this phase of renovation, the lighting was also completely replaced based on old photos and engravings of the period. New lighting fixtures were made to measure by craftsmen which gave the Passage its 19th century appearance and atmosphere.
 
All these renovations, which were spread out over a twenty year period, could not have been possible without the invaluable aid of the Brussels Capital Region and, in particular, the Monuments and Sites Department (Urbanism department) which offered its closely followed advice and follow-up of the various stages of renovation while also providing specific subsidies which were needed to bring these renovations to a successful conclusion.
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