Belgian Building

The Belgian Friendship Building or Belgian Pavilion is the former exhibition building for Belgium from the 1939/1940 World's Fair in New York City. It now serves as Barco-Stevens Hall on the campus of Virginia Union University (VUU), in Richmond, Virginia.

Belgian Building
LocationLombardy St., jct. with Brook Rd., Richmond, Virginia
Coordinates37°33′45.4″N 77°26′59.5″W
Arealess than one acre
ArchitectVictor Bourgeois, Léon Stynen
Architectural styleInternational Style
NRHP reference No.01000439 [1]
VLR No.127-0173
Significant dates
Added to NRHPFebruary 26, 1970
Designated VLRDecember 2, 1969[2]

It was designed by Belgian architects Victor Bourgeois and Léon Stynen under Henry van de Velde, and is notable as an early example of Modernist architecture in the United States. Due to the outbreak of World War II, the Pavilion could not be returned to Belgium. The Belgian government sponsored a competition to determine the building's new home. VUU won, and the Pavilion moved to Richmond in 1941 as VUU's Belgian Friendship Building. Through 1997, the university's library was also located in the Belgian Friendship Building. The building was damaged by Hurricane Isabel in 2003. It is now VUU's gymnasium.[3]


  1. "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. March 13, 2009.
  2. "Virginia Landmarks Register". Virginia Department of Historic Resources. Archived from the original on 21 September 2013. Retrieved 19 March 2013.
  3. "Belgian Pavilion: New York World's Fair 1939". Bells for Peace Website. Retrieved Mar 3, 2011.