Fate can sometimes be a good provider... Two separate, private investments will remap part of the municipality of Aiseau-Presles, on the border between the provinces of Namur and Hainaut.
The Spanish Group Basalde will transform the disused site of the former Oignies soda ash plant, along the River Sambre, into a complex that will include 14,000 m2 of housing (approximately one hundred apartments) and 2,000 m2 of commercial premises, as well as extensive public spaces. This 20 million Euro investment is the first foreign investment by this well-established family-run group based in the Basque region of Spain. Its CEO, José Mari Ruiz de Azua, explained that the property situation in his country naturally led his business to look abroad. And this may not be the last project in Wallonia.
On the other side of the road is Sainte-Marie d’Oignies Priory, a remarkable listed site which became famous as the place where Hugo d’Oignies created one of the most beautiful metalwork "Treasures" of Meuse; this Treasure is known throughout the world and considered one of the seven wonders of Belgium. This long-abandoned site and its grounds have been acquired by the Flemish group MKBH, which has begun renovation work to turn it into a one-hundred bed nursing home. This involves an investment of 18 million Euros and the creation of around 40 direct jobs. Arnaud Collette