Belval: a completely new city district for the engine of the new Luxembourg
The University of Luxembourg is the engine of the new Luxembourg. So it is entirely appropriate that this year it also acquires a new home – in a completely new district of Esch-sur-Alzette, the country's second largest town.
The University's administrative services moved from Luxembourg City to Belval in the spring of this year, and in September the students and researchers of the Faculty of Language and Literature, Humanities, Arts and Education will follow. Students of other faculties will follow in the coming years.
This is because here, in the south of the Grand Duchy, the Belval Campus has been coming into existence over recent years, one of the biggest urbanisation projects in Europe at the moment – and the impressive symbol of a country that has once again decided to reinvent itself.
All the participants in innovation are "just around the corner"
The location itself is highly symbolic: after all, Belval used to be the beating heart of Luxembourg's steel industry. And it is exactly here, where wealth and progress once began, that another impressive piece of the future is coming into being.
Belval stands once again for innovation – and for life: in the very near future, in an area as big as 120 football fields, 25,000 people will live, work, research and study. Typically for Luxembourg, the distances involved are short: everything can be reached on foot or by bike – everything is "just around the corner".
This is particularly true of the Belval Campus. This is a melting pot of different disciplines which, thanks to the theme-based concept behind the buildings, opens up new opportunities for interdisciplinary partnerships – not only within the University but also with the two research centres LIST (technology) and LISER (social sciences), both of which are located in the immediate neighbourhood. Furthermore, the first-class quality of the lecture theatres, laboratories and other infrastructure, together with the urban environment, will offer a new way of living and working – on a human scale.
A cosmopolitan outlook – a key factor for progress
After all, it is the people who are at the heart of Belval Campus; people from all over the world, as has long been the case in Luxembourg. Soon, about 7,000 students and 3,000 researchers will be based here – and not only on the University campus. The site is also the new home of research centres, the Fonds National de la Recherche (FNR) and Luxinnovation. If you build on the principle of intellectual and cultural diversity, synergies can arise; education and research in Belval should ultimately lead to innovation.
This innovation goal is part of Luxembourg's national strategy for the future. The idea is that, on the 48 hectares of space provided by Belval, some of the world's best brains will produce results that are of social and economic importance for Luxembourg and the rest of the world. Local relevance and international excellence are the guiding principles for the whole centre for research – along with open-mindedness and an international outlook. With good reason: Luxembourg has always done well when it made the world welcome here. That used to be the case in the factories, and now it is true of the financial services and the European Quarter – and even more so of the blossoming scientific community in the new Luxembourg.