Yesterday the official start of the northern station area development in Aalst was announced at a press conference. Speakers at the press conference included the mayor Christoph D'Haese and the area supervisor Christian Kieckens. The triangular area to the north of the station is delineated by the railway line, the Denderstraat and the River Dender and is currently still functioning as a large parking site. It is being developed by Denderoever NV, a partnership between Breevast and Besix RED. The realization of diverse building functions and a new lay-out of the public space to include a high-end city square will give the area a considerable quality boost. For the zone, cepezed is developing a new parking garage with space for 900 cars, a cinema building and a large-scale block with housing, offices and retail spaces. Other functions, including housing and workspaces, are being designed by the Antwerp architects’ office HUB. The parking garage has double-helix ramps built around two patios that provide light and air and a skin constructed from modified pinewood. The realization of the facility is planned for the middle of next year, while the cinema building and the block with mixed functions will follow later. At present, a start has already been made with a new pedestrian tunnel that connects the two sides of the station.