Located in the province of Hainaut just 50 kilometres south of Brussels, the city of Charleroi is a large French-speaking centre widely regarded as Belgium’s industrial heartland.
Despite the decline in the coal-based industries on which the city’s economy and status was once built, Charleroi has reinvented itself as a cultural hub and today remains an important centre for the glass and steel industry, manufacturing and construction. As a working city, it’s the ideal location for job hunters seeking fantastic opportunities in a wide variety of sectors.
Aside from its rich industrial heritage, Charleroi is a vibrant city boasting a thriving creative arts and cultural scene, which has earned it a reputation as Belgium’s ‘new Berlin.’ Indeed, the city is currently in the midst of a huge transformation, with many exciting regeneration projects that seek to reinvent the city and embrace the future, while also capitalising on its rich past.
Another bonus of Charleroi is that it is also ideally located for travel to other Belgium cities and surrounding European countries, with great rail, road and air links.
Living in Charleroi
Charleroi has a wide range of housing stock and is generally quite a bit cheaper than Brussels, making it a great option for those seeking value for money.
On average, you can expect to pay around €750 per month for a 1-bedroom apartment in the City Centre or as little as €550 in a neighbourhood on the outskirts of Charleroi. Prices can reach €1,000 per calendar month for larger 3-bedroom properties.
The City Centre is the ideal location for those wanting to make the most of the city’s cultural amenities and famous pulsating spirit. With many regeneration projects that are forever changing the landscape, it is an exciting place to live – and one that is also likely to grow and thrive further still over the coming years. Other popular neighbourhoods include Couillet, Dampremy, Goutroux, Marchienne-au-Point and Montignies-sur-Sambre.
Location and transport
Charleroi is the first city in the municipality of Wallonia, located on the banks of the Sambre River and just 50km to the south of Brussels. As such, you can reach the Belgium capital in just 1 hour by road, or faster still if you take the train.
Charleroi enjoys an excellent range of transportation options, with trams, trains and bus services taking you to wherever you need to be. For travel further afield, Brussels South Charleroi Airport is just 7.5km away from the city centre and is the second busiest airport in Belgium, offering frequent flights to a wide variety of other major European hubs. It is served by airlines including Air Belgium, Ryanair and Wizz Air.
Make the short journey to Brussels and you can take advantage of an even greater selection of travel links, including train services to London, Paris and Amsterdam.
Shopping, culture and nightlife
Charleroi is nicknamed the ‘new Berlin’ and boasts some of Europe’s best arts and cultural amenities, with many festivals taking place throughout the year. It has a thriving underground music scene and is famous for its street art, meaning there is always something to see and do. As you would expect, you’ll find a fantastic selection of shops, bars and restaurants dotted around the city.
Work and Education
Charleroi is an industrial city and as such is home to a wide variety of industries, making for great job opportunities. Businesses operating in manufacturing and chemicals are major employers in the city, but it is possible to find jobs in most sectors, with many cutting-edge technology businesses having set up in the city in recent years. Make the commute to nearby Brussels and you’ll find an even greater selection of jobs.
In terms of education, there are many good schools located across the city. For higher education, the University of Louvain’s UCLouvain Charleroi campus is located within the city and is home to 3 faculties and a research centre.
Why move to Charleroi?
Charleroi is a diverse city that is really looking to the future. Offering great job opportunities, affordable living costs and a wealth of cultural amenities, it’s an exciting place to be – and a city that is set to thrive over the coming years.
If you find yourself relocating to Charleroi and in need of storage
during the move, do not hesitate to get in touch our friendly advisers are on hand to help.