1976: The Introduction of a Brussels Metro Station Named After a Belgian Princess

July 20, 1976

In Belgium, the Joséphine-Charlotte station on Line 1B (now Line 1) of the Brussels Metro was officially opened. The Brussels Metro is a rapid transit system serving a large portion of the Brussels-Capital Region. This region encompasses a total of 19 municipalities, including Belgium’s capital city of Brussels.

The Joséphine-Charlotte station is located in the municipality of Woluwe-Saint-Lambert, which is in the eastern part of the region. This station is specifically located below the Avenue de Broqueville in that municipality.

The Joséphine-Charlotte station was named after someone who had been born a princess of Belgium. The green square adjacent to the station’s entrance likewise bears her name. Joséphine-Charlotte (1927-2005) was the oldest child of Leopold III (1901-1983), who served as king of Belgium from 1934 until his abdication in 1951; and his wife Astrid (1905-1935), who had been born princess of Sweden.

Joséphine-Charlotte was the sister of two other Belgian kings: Baudouin (1930-1993), who succeeded their father to the throne and reigned until his death; and Albert II (born in 1934), who succeeded his brother and reigned until abdicating in 2013. Philippe, who has reigned as Belgium’s king since the 2013 abdication of his father, is a nephew of Joséphine-Charlotte. Her other royal relatives include her first cousin Harald V (born in 1937), who has been king of Norway since 1991.

A dozen years before the rapid transit station bearing her name was opened, Joséphine-Charlotte acquired another royal title. This title was a direct result of her marriage to a member of Luxembourg’s royal family in 1953. In 1964, her husband Jean (1921-2019) became grand duke (the monarchial head) of Luxembourg. This made Joséphine-Charlotte grand duchess of Luxembourg, a title she held until Jean’s abdication in 2000.

Photo Credit: Trougnoff (licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International license at https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/deed.en)

For more information on the Joséphine-Charlotte metro station, please check out https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jos%C3%A9phine-Charlotte_metro_station

Additional information on the Brussels Metro is available at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brussels_Metro

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