Mid-19th century

Ghent’s booming textile industry is in need of more space for larger factories. However, areas just outside the city walls are off-limits for construction. Even if production takes place there, goods have to pass through a city toll to be sold, adding to costs.


The toll is abolished, fortifications demolished, and the moats filled in, including the Blaisantvest. (In 1863, the connecting canal is built, making this area an ideal location for large new textile factories.)


Parmentier, Van Hoegaerden & Cie are one of the first pioneering companies in the area. It goes by the nickname ‘grass factory’, since it’s the first building constructed in the grasslands outside the city wall.


Parmentier, Van Hoegaerden & Cie is acquired and becomes part of the larger textile group ‘Usines Cotonnières Gand-Zele-Tubize,’ with the Ghent division known as the ‘Indiennerie-Teinturerie Gantoise.’


This textile company builds a new spinning mill, which is the building with twin stair towers flanking its sides. This is a prime example of the ‘Manchester-type’ building, a reference to a typical industrial architectural style dominant in Great Britain.


The factory undergoes a name and ownership change, becoming ‘Usines Cotonnières Belgique’. It closes its doors in 1962.


Vynckier takes over the entire site, consolidating it into a single large complex.