BU-xit? NO!


In October 2018, OIB announced the closure and relocation of the Beaulieu site buildings: BU-XIT. The original intended plan was to:

  1. Close the nursery as of 2020;
  2. Empty the BU1/5/9/24 buildings probably by the end of 2020;
  3. Empty the BU29/31/33 buildings around 2024. No further information was released after the OIB’s communication and no detailed plan was rolled out before the background survey of this report was published on 12 June 2019.

A survey on the staff attitudes towards the relocation was designed and initiated by a colleague from DG ENV: Szilárd Erhart, and Generation 2004 gave its support to the initiative. The results would later be presented to the Brussels Local Staff Committee so they would be officially channelled to the competent authorities at OIB. The Survey was open from 12 June until 28 of June 2019 on EU Survey and its key goals were to:

  1. Increase awareness and fuel discourse on this matter and to
  2. Find facts to support the formulation of evidence based proposals.

In general, the survey results are NOT in favour of BU-XIT; here are a few of the highlights.

Response rate to the survey was very high; in total 569 colleagues filled in the survey confirming the importance of the survey questions.

  • 75% of respondents are happy in general that they can work in Beaulieu buildings and not in other COM buildings in Brussels.
  • Average rating of the BU buildings (4.2/5) is significantly higher than that of the second best alternative (Schuman area, 3.3/5).
  • Considering results per DG located in Beaulieu, in all DGs colleagues have chosen their current location as the first best option.
  • Colleagues commute a total average daily travel time of 48 minutes to get to and from the Beaulieu buildings, while they would need 65 minutes to get to the Schuman area, an estimated increase of 35% of their current commuting time.
  • 75% of respondents agree that his/her family’s quality of life would be higher if he/she worked in the Beaulieu area. More than 54% think that moving from Beaulieu would make logistics for his/her children more difficult, while only 12% think it would be easier.

Nevertheless, there are good news. A few days after the publication of the survey, OIB informed the Directorates-General in BU buildings on 17 June that the OIB intends to negotiate an extension of the buildings BU-1/5/9 and BU24 until 2023. If on one side this will allow for a better planning of a relocation and for families to prepare, we do hope the full report will help steer and better inform OIB on any future actions towards the relocation of the Beaulieu buildings.

Leave a Reply