A fine example of the Neoclassical style in Brussels, the construction of the former Royal Astronomical Observatory began in 1827 and was based on a design by the architect Nicolas Roget. Almost completed by the time of Belgium’s independence in 1830, it suffered damage during the fighting, sustaining hits from bullets and cannonballs. A partially windowed gallery connects two identical buildings, once topped by a hip roof with an observation turret featuring a retractable cover. In the late 19th century, the complex became obsolete due to the opening of the new observatory in Uccle/Ukkel in 1890. It was subsequently taken over by a government department, with the garden being turned into a public green space. It was renovated in 1990 and, since the start of this year, it has been home to the offices of Homegrade. This service was created to assist private individuals and organisations with home improvements in the Brussels region and provides useful information about acoustics, energy, housing, renovation, heritage and urban planning.