Cinquantenaire Belgium, Brussels

Cinquantenaire

Parc du Cinquantenaire (French for "Park of the Fiftieth Anniversary", pronounced ) or Jubelpark (Dutch for "Jubilee Park", pronounced ) is a large public, urban park (30 hectares) in the easternmost part of the European Quarter in Brussels, Belgium.

Most buildings of the U-shaped complex which dominate the park were commissioned by the Belgian government under the patronage of King Leopold II for the 1880 National Exhibition commemorating the fiftieth anniversary of Belgian independence. During successive exhibitions in the same area, more structures were added. The centrepiece triumphal arch was erected in 1905 replacing a previous temporary version of the arcade by Gédéon Bordiau. The structures were built in iron, glass and stone, symbolising the economic and industrial performance of Belgium. The surrounding 30-hectare park esplanade was full of picturesque gardens, ponds and waterfalls. It housed several trade fairs, exhibitions and festivals at the beginning of the century. In 1930 the government decided to reserve Cinquantenaire for use as a leisure park.

The Royal Military Museum has been the sole tenant of the northern half of the complex since 1880. The southern half is occupied by the Jubelpark museum (Cinquantenaire Museum) and the AutoWorld Museum. The Temple of Human Passions, a remainder from 1886, and the Great Mosque of Brussels from 1978 are located in the north-western corner of the park (see map below).

Line 1 of the Brussels Metro and the Belliard Tunnel from wetstraat pass underneath the park, the latter partly in an open section in front of the Arch. The nearest metro stations are Schuman to the west of the park, and Mérode immediately to the east.