Puppet show facades Gelmelenstraat will again have rear construction: six months of one-way traffic in Vordensteinstraat (Schoten)

The Vordensteinstraat is closed in the direction of the Gelmelenstraat, but from the Kuipersstraat. This measure applies until 28 February 2023. “During that period, Bouwwerken Vermeiren will place a crane on part of the road in front of our yard,” says architect Erik Block.

The arch of the Forum buildings on the side of restaurant ‘t Pandje close by will also remain closed to all traffic until November. This is done to make demolition work possible in function of the renovation of the forum buildings, which the municipality has recently started. The old film and theater hall and the adjacent buildings will be given a complete makeover inside. These works are of a long duration and completion is not expected until 2024. The Gelmelenhof behind it is now also under construction.

Jet is no longer allowed to drive into this narrow part of Vordensteinstraat. Meanwhile, there is a crane that prevents safe passing in two directions. — © YES

Looks from yesteryear

The houses in Gelmelenstraat 81-83, or what remains of them, are the subject of a private project. They belong to the last remnants of the old village center. Project developer Geert Van Gastel opts for a combination of restoration and new construction.

“We will restore the charming facades of the two houses that are protected as village views. Up to and including the exterior joinery, they will soon look the same as when they were built at the time. Even the original hatches are being replaced. The rest of the ‘new construction’ in Gelmelenstraat will also have the ‘looks’ of yesteryear, including Boom roof tiles”, Van Gastel promised earlier.

The works will take eighteen months. Around the corner in Vordensteinstraat, Van Gastel and architect Block are planning a complete new building with five apartments. The totally worn out and little valuable buildings that were there were already demolished last year.

An impression of the finished project, seen from the Gelmelenhof.

An impression of the finished project, seen from the Gelmelenhof. — © Erik Block

Already sold three apartments

In addition to the construction, the sale of Residence Gelmel has also started. Verlat Immobiliën in ‘s-Gravenwezel, which organizes the sale exclusively, has already sold three of the seven apartments. “I am not surprised by that interest”, says Thierry Leys of Verlat.

“You don’t often find such spacious apartments, ranging from 121 to even 182 square meters in size, right in a village center with shops and services nearby. The weekly market, which is set up in front of the door, is also an asset for people who may become less mobile.”

The facades of the old houses, which are now stand-alone after the demolition, are currently an attraction in the center. Seen from behind, they certainly look like a puppet theater or set for a stage performance.


The 'puppet show facades' of Gelmelenstraat, seen from behind..

The ‘puppet show facades’ of Gelmelenstraat, seen from behind.. — © YES

It is still allowed to enter the Vordensteinstraat.

It is still allowed to enter the Vordensteinstraat. — © YES

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