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Bostoen is delighted with the work carried out for the Alida development (7 houses and 38 apartments) and is to continue its partnership with Gillion. The first stone of a second residential project will be laid in January 2020, in Forest.
At the junction between Rue du Delta and Avenue Van Volxem, in a neighbourhood where city and nature mingle, the new project, which is to start in January 2020, will last 330 days. Bostoen has entrusted Gillion with the structural and finishing work that includes six single-family houses, the Forestine Residence with fourteen apartments and nineteen parking spaces and the Pauline Residence with twelve apartments and twelve parking spaces.
For the Alida project, Gillion understood and responded optimally to the client’s needs thanks to a lean approach. Lean Manufacturing is the western version of the Toyota Production System and aims to refine the execution process. The schedule is precise and execution as efficient as possible. Rather than labour saving, it’s about avoiding wasting stock and production waste. Here again, Gillion will carry out different stages at once by starting the finishing work before the structural work has been completed. Thanks to lean manufacturing, Gillion can therefore set up worksites that reflect ideal execution.
It should be noted that Bostoen, acting as developer, is planning to renew its trust in us with the third phase of the development. The feat continues for both companies, while in the lush atmosphere of Forest, a neighbourhood is undergoing a major transformation, in perfect harmony with its surroundings.
The first stone of CREB2 was laid on the 22nd of January. This day centre for children with multiple disabilities, is located in Anderlecht and will complement the one in Woluwe-Saint-Lambert that currently accommodates 55 children.
An entirely passive, prefabricated building with a wood and steel structure! Thanks to the generosity of charity organisations, such as the Rotary Club or Cap 48, and significant funding from the Brussels Region, this wonderful project will soon be able to accommodate 30 children who, up until now, spent up to five hours travelling between the centre in Woluwe and their home. The non-profit organisation CREB has found a prime plot on the Erasme Hospital site to the north-west of Brussels: a location that will make life much easier for the children and their families by limiting travelling time.
This project therefore fulfils a genuine need, but several significant partners have been called upon for funding as the overall cost (construction and equipment) is estimated to be €3,650,000. With planning permission granted, the specifications approved, and a long-term lease for a ground rent of €25,000 per annum, the works can now begin! We are proud to contribute to this vital operation.
For Gillion, construction work also serves a social and societal purpose. The Brussels company will soon be renovating the Samusocial headquarters in Anderlecht. A mission that they take pride in.
For almost four years, the Boulevard Poincaré in Anderlecht has been welcoming homeless people in a former office building belonging to the Brussels Region.
This centre for vulnerable people is in dire need of renovation. After a call for tenders to renovate and improve the building, Gillion’s bid was selected.
Considering the complexity of the project – mainly due to the need for major refurbishment in a dense urban fabric – it was Gillion’s experience that sealed the deal. The company, whose main constituents are based and very active in the Brussels-Capital Region, has shown that they know how to deal with such constraints. The team has already participated in numerous public social housing and healthcare projects. These experiences are put to good use in the Samusocial project.
In this Design & Build market, Gillion’s partners are the Altiplan architectural firm, TPF and PS2. This team is highly motivated and determined to offer decent accommodation to the disadvantaged. Needless to say, it is of primary importance for Gillion to enable Samusocial to function comfortably. Once the permit is granted, the construction site should be completed in 2021 after roughly 150 days of work.
As usual at the end of each year, Gillion brings its staff together for a winter barbecue. An opportunity to celebrate the past year and look to the future. This year, the festivities will take place at the Kontich headquarters.
2019 was a special year for Gillion. Not only did the construction company celebrate its 100th anniversary (yes, that’s right!), but it also underwent a complete makeover by entirely revamping its brand. It is at that anniversary party that employees have shown their new worksite jackets bearing the new logo.
We mustn’t forget that 2019 was a year of many successes for the company. Gillion rose to the challenge at Pairi Daiza, Europe’s largest animal park. A new World, the Last Frontier, was built adhering to a strict deadline to ensure that the new part of the park could open at the start of the season. Mission accomplished!
At 100 years of age, the Gillion company appears to be outstandingly youthful. It won the Trends Gazelles trophy in January and a victory at the Green Solutions Awards. At the opening of the Batimat Trade Fair in Paris, Gillion received the Health & Comfort prize for innovation at the IBGE forestry brigade site in the Sonian Forest.
As a family business, keenly run by the fourth generation, Gillion is committed to continuous improvement while maintaining a human scale. Whether for colossal sites or smaller missions, the objectives for 2020 are unchanged: listen to customers, innovate, be efficient and respect the environment while considering energy performance and the reuse of materials. 2019 was yet another springboard year. Gillion intends to celebrate it with those that make it all possible.
On Monday, November 4, Gillion was selected as the winner of the 2019 Green Solutions Awards. With the innovative Brigade Forestière project, it won the prestigious ‘Health & Comfort’ prize awarded at the opening of the Batimat Fair in Paris. Among 192 candidates from 37 countries, Gillion showcased its expertise and skills!
The winning project
As is the case each year, the seventh edition of the ‘Green Solutions Awards’, organised by the Construction21 network (an international collaborative platform for sustainable construction and cities), provided candidates with the opportunity to submit an innovative sustainable construction project. Located in a protected area, the ‘Brigade Forestière’ project, intended for Sonian Forest wardens, was built to seamlessly integrate with its classified environment. Everything from the architecture to the materials and tools used has been implemented to preserve the surrounding fauna and flora. Inside, the spaces have been designed to be functional and pleasant, with minimal impact on their environment: sustainable materials, a passive building, natural water recovery and treatment, high-performance ventilation, green roofs, and so on. The Brigade Forestière building has been awarded the ‘Health & Comfort Award’ for its consideration of both the immediate environment and its occupants!
Since 2012, the ‘Green Solutions Awards’ have been promoting projects that take action against global warming by highlighting solutions used to construct sustainable buildings and infrastructure. The competition, that begins with national selections, is divided into three categories: buildings, neighbourhoods and infrastructure. The ‘Brigade Forestière’ project initially qualified in Brussels where it was in competition with other Belgian projects in the ‘buildings’ category. It then competed on an international level and at the final in Paris was rewarded for the innovations within the Brigade Forestière project.
Gillion would particularly like to thank the entire team, its partners and all those who contributed to the success of this fabulous project: the project manager Brussels Environment, the architectural firm B612 Associates, and the Greisch, Matriciel and OLM Paysagistes design firms.
While celebrating 100 years of existence, Gillion is also revitalising itself. A new image, new website and... new challenges! It's an opportunity to re-affirm its status and new strong and multi-faceted identity, without ignoring the past!
From its origins as a reinforced concrete specialist, the company has developed a multidisciplinary approach. Over the years, different areas of expertise have been developed in a natural and complementary way, expanding Gillion's range of services and possibilities in Belgium and abroad. Today, the subsidiaries born throughout this journey are now united under the banner of Gillion which, with its new image and new website, aims to reinforce the DNA of its historic brand, while affirming its strong position in the construction field.
Four generations dedicated to construction
Just one hundred years ago, the founder of the company, René Gillion, entered the field of construction. At that time, he decided to specialise in concrete. A hard-working and meticulous man, he increased his order booked and signed prestigious contracts in Brussels, from the Résidence Palace to the Hôtel Plaza, the INR Place Flagey (National Radio Institute) and the Royal Museum of Natural History. Gillion very quickly made a name for itself.
One decade after its beginnings, a second generation came to the fore. In 1930, Fernand Gillion joined his father’s business, helped to make it more prosperous and established a subsidiary in Congo, SOGIAF. In its third generation, Gillion delivered projects in all construction sectors (hospitals, factories, offices, cement works, metro works), and became active in civil engineering, public works or private contracts, even extending its presence in Flanders via its subsidiary SOGIAF.
Today, the fourth generation is driving new creativity in the business, while also pursuing its tried-and-tested activities. Gillion is expanding its offerings in the Design & Build market, passive structures and property development. The group aims to be a leading investor and promoter, while continuing the family traditions of its founding fathers. It has a new strong and multi-faceted identity well matched to the challenges of the 21st century.
A brand-new 34-unit building will open next year at 12/14 Allée Verte, next to Tour & Taxis. This new project has been entrusted to Gillion.
A short distance from the Gare du Nord, this new construction site has just opened under the direction of Gillion, in collaboration with the architects FORMa* (Benoît Nis and Julien Renaux). The new building will rise up in a district in full transformation, which has been experiencing a real property development boom and significant cultural renewal in recent years, particularly with the establishment of flagship venues such as Kanal-Centre Pompidou.
Located in front of the "Klavertje" community school , the 550 m2 rectangular plot lies between Allée Verte to the west and Avenue de l'Héliport to the east.It will soon host a new residential complex with no less than 34 units subdivided as follows: 4 studios, 1 one-bedroom, 26 two-bedroom and 3 three-bedroom apartments, complemented by a commercial ground floor; all in a bright atmosphere with particular attention to energy performance.
Due to the small plot profile and programme requirements, three basement levels are planned. Shielding and deep foundations will be created in the water table, which is very marked in this area of Brussels. These techniques, perfectly mastered by Gillion's teams, will allow the creation of three levels of underground parking. The difficulties of such a project lying close to the canal in a particularly dense urban environment were studied upstream by Gillion, in collaboration with the design offices. The project has therefore been committed to fully, with a tight schedule. The complete work is expected to take a little over one year, with delivery scheduled for October 2020. The budget extends to € 6,600,000.
As a civil engineering, investment and property company, SOGIAF is changing its name and strengthening its activities under the colours of the Gillion group. It has a new identity to mark its affiliation with a strong group, Gillion!
Recognised for its high-quality projects and experienced staff, SOGIAF was founded in Leopoldville on 18 August 1950. The Gillion family has been at the helm of the company since its outset and wears its colours with pride, but new times demand new momentum and a new vision...
With this in mind, on 24 September 2019, SOGIAF retired its well-known logo of three blue-grey giraffes to create a new identity, and especially a name, selected as a banner for all its activities of construction, development and property management in the "Gillion" group. A new strong and shared identity for a company ready to continue its relentless progress and, from its offices in Kontich, further spread Gillion's DNA in the Flemish Region.
For the occasion, a symbolic “funeral ceremony” was held by our collaborators last week, in the presence of the entire SOGIAF team. It was a nice show of colours on a day loaded with emotions and memories. Thanks are due to everyone who contributed to this change, to all of our colleagues and management, and all staff and former workers who have helped to build our reputation over the years.
Gillion has turned 100 years old! And 100 years must be celebrated with the whole family... On 31 August, in the alleys of Pairi Daiza, Gillion's staff met to blow out the candles. It was a festive day full of surprises!
With its know-how transmitted from one generation to the next over ten decades, the Gillion group had to blow out its candles as a family. The group's hundredth anniversary was celebrated at Pairi Daiza on 31 August. A day bathed in sunshine brought together all Gillion contributors and their loved ones around a large barbecue. It was an opportunity to thank them for their commitment which has made the group successful every day over 100 years.
The event, held in the largest animal park in Europe, also highlighted the new world, "The Last Frontier", recently completed by Gillion. A walk in which families were able to discover the pool of Steller's sealions that live in the icy North Pacific and appreciate the new Hobbit-inspired lodges, fishermen's houses from the Far North and experience some thrills in the company of bears and wolves!
A hundred years is a long time...
Whether on construction sites or in development of promotions, whether in new construction projects or renovations of buildings in the public sector (schools, childcare, etc.) or on behalf of private investors (residential buildings, offices, etc.), Gillion has established a solid reputation in the construction sector.
In celebrating its 100 years and taking stock, the group feels satisfied, but is in no way resting on its laurels. Its management is looking forward more than ever.
In the years ahead, Gillion will continue to combine promotion and construction, building greener and more energy-conscious walls, as well as strengthening its status, meeting the challenges of a changing sector and assuming a new position of strength in the construction sector. This is a vision shared by the group with its highly motivated staff, which will lead to great new celebrations in years to come!