Brussels' Royal Palace voted 3rd ugliest building
The Royal Palace in Brussels has been pipped at the post by a house in Boortmeerbeek (Flemish Brabant) and a farm that is tumbling down in Leuven in the race to be elected "Belgium's ugliest building".
The search was launched by the building renovation people Groep Jan Stallaert, who specialise in tackling weather-beaten building facades.
The owner of the winning edifice can get his or her building demolished free of charge.
Anyone taking part in the internet poll could nominate a building and 252 buildings were entered.
The list included Bruges Concert Hall, Koekelberg Basilica, the Ijzer Tower in Diksmuide and all blocks of flats on the Belgian Coast.
The winning entrant is "Huis Schiplaken" in Boortmeerbeek, but the competition organisers are worried that the poll may have been manipulated. A spokeswoman for Groep Jan Stallaert told the daily Het Laatste Nieuws that the owners probably already planned to pull down the building.
The organisers intend to ensure no fraud occurred before handing over the prize.
If the two buildings that came out in front don’t pick up the prize, King Albert’s working palace would be next in line. Groep Jan Stallaert's Sylvie De Maegd believes wielding the demolition hammer there is out of the question.
Perhaps the Nieuw Helmond complex that now embellishes the Langestraat in Ostend stands a chance after all. It was voted the country's eighth ugliest building.