Natuurpunt Roosdaal opened a number of new hiking trails through its nature reserves. During the festive opening, walkers could discover the new routes in Roosdaal for themselves and enjoy a tasty breakfast or a delicious soup at De Hoeve care farm.
The hiking trails connect several nature reserves with each other. Marc Vloeberghen, chairman of Natuurpunt Roosdaal: “Accessible and connected nature, that’s what we aim for at Natuurpunt. The already existing and known routes in Berchembos and Hulsbroekbos now connect with the walks through Grooten Bosch and the birth forest.”
The Grooten Bosch received special attention during this event. This area is located in an important stream valley that connects Onze-Lieve-Vrouw-Lombeek with Strijtem in a green-blue way. In the wet part is a pool where, with a bit of luck, you can see a pinniped salamander gasping for air. Higher up in the forest is a clearing where sand used to be dumped. The site was an old dumping ground for excavations from the construction of the Brussels metro. Due to the bizarre soil composition, many interesting species can be found here, including wild orchids.
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Photos: Liessa VH
Nature for everyone
Together with MPC Sint-Franciscus, Zonnelied and Schools Sint-Franciscus, a wheelchair-friendly walk was mapped out to give everyone access to the Strijtem nature. The starting point of the walk is at Sint-Fransiscus.
“It took a while, but now our slogan ‘nature for everyone’ has become reality in Roosdaal. With the new routes we open up a nice piece of green Roosdaal for the general public. By ‘everyone’ we also mean ‘everyone’. Access options were also provided for less mobile people. The fact that we can do all this with volunteers is very warming”, Marc Vloeberghen continues.
With provincial support, a wheelchair-accessible decking path with picnic bench was constructed in Grooten Bosch. In turn, the municipality of Roosdaal provided a connecting bridge over the stream, to offer walkers a nice extra experience of nature.
“In the highly urbanized and densely populated Flemish Brabant, it is not easy to bring nature closer to the people. We therefore invest heavily in nature and support organizations and municipalities. Young and old can now enjoy this beautiful piece of accessible nature,” said Bart Nevens, deputy of the province of Flemish Brabant.
“As a municipal council, we are of course extremely pleased with this realization. Accessibility remains extremely important for people with a mobile disability and we are very happy to contribute to this, if possible. This piece of nature is also close to the Koetshuis community center,” says Mayor Wim Goossens.
A short trip, a walk with a buggy or wheelchair, or a real day trip: the distances vary from 1 to 4 km, with a total of 15 kilometers of walking pleasure. Information can be found on the website: www.natuurpunt.be/roosdaal. Leaflets with walking maps are available in the GC Koetshuis or in café Den Haas.