24 September 1955: the official start of the world fair constructions. King Baudouin lays the first stone.

Expo poster

The Exhibition

Baudouin & Albert

Friday 18 april 1958:Front page of  «Het Nieuwsblad»

(click picture to enlarge)

Preface

Thanks for visiting my Expo 58 website.

The idea for this site started during my surf sessions. I was surprised that I only could find a few small websites about Expo 58.

Depressingly that 'one of the most beautiful world fairs ever' is not well represented on the Internet. Because of this, I decided to create a more extensive website around the Brussels world fair.What I had in mind was to bring a pleasant Expo overview, mainly visual, without boring enumerations and profound words.Briefly, a website about Expo 58 that gives the visitor a general survey and a warm retro feeling.

So, when you leave this site, I hope that you can imagine how overwhelming this world exhibition was.

Rudolph Nevi nevi@skynet.be

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Frontpage Het Nieuwsblad

17 april 1958; Together with his brother Prince Albert, King Baudouin opens the Expo 58 exhibition in a convertible Cadillac.

This Expo 58 website is divided into 10 chapters, namely:

 

THE EXHIBITION

The first page of this Expo 58 site shows you general information about the exhibition and some instructions for functional navigation trough these web pages.

 

THE SECTIONS

The Expo-site was splitted into 7 sections.

Via the Expo-map you can easily go to one of the 7 sections where you find a list and pictures of the pavilions.

Ten sub pages are part of this webpage: The Belgian Section, Belgian Congo, Foreign Section with a subpage about The Big Four, the largest constructions of this section. The International Section, The Attractions, Science & Fine Arts, The Folklore Section, The Restaurants at the Expo and a page with Others shows unusual Expo buildings.

 

EXPO BY NIGHT

This page shows a few pictures of attractive illuminated pavilions by night and other illuminations.

 

EXPO VISITORS

Pictures of all kinds of Expo visitors, from high placed persons and celebrities to more regular people.

 

EXPO MOBILES

As an oldtimer collector I have special interest for the different kinds of transportation people used to travel to the exhibition. This page shows the fleet of cars of that days with some rare possibilities, especially built to visit the fair.

 

EXPO SOUVENIRS

Sweet memories of the Expo with collectables and other stuff from the past.

 

ATOMIUM

All about the impressive Atomium with short history and pictures taken during the exhibition and more recent ones.

 

EXPO RELICS

This page shows  pictures of recovered exhibition remnants. Not only buildings and construction parts but also other typical Expo things

 

VIEWMASTER

Here you can find a short ViewMaster history and 5 buttons which link you to the Expo VM-reels. A very complete overview of Expo 58 spreaded over 5 subpages

 

INFO & LINKS

Information about this website and his creator with some interesting links to nostalgic websites.

 

 

Expo Hostess

Please use this remote-control for a functional navigation trough this site.

Expo headmaster Baron Moens de Fernig

Tekstvak: Opening hours

EXHIBITION:	
Thursday April 17 - Sunday October 19
Everyday 10 a.m. - 24 p.m.

PAVILIONS:	
April/Mai:  10 a.m. - 18 p.m.
June/July/August:	10 a.m. - 19 p.m.
September/October: 10 a.m. - 18 p.m.
On Saturdays: 1 hour longer opened

Entrance fees
30 Francs:  adults
20 Francs:  children < 12 years,  invalids, soldiers, groups, schools
Free entrance:	 children < 6 years,  congressists
Season ticket :   500 Francs

Expo 58: Universal Exhibition Brussels

 

1958: After nine editions Belgium organised its tenth world fair named Expo 58, Universal Exhibition Brussels. Already in 1948 on proposal of the Brussels Mayor  the disicion was taken by the Belgian government.

It was the first after the 1939 New York world fair, the first Belgian world fair since 1935 and the first in Europe since 1937. It was a general and universal exhibition of the first class. Expo 58 opened the gates for the public on april 17 of the year 1958 and closed the doors on october 19 of the same year.

 

It took place on the outskirts of Brussels city, at the Heysel site, with the  park of  Ossegem in the centre. 200 hectares were divided into 7 sections and 52 countries participated with more than 150 pavilions. The theme of the fair was: “A world view - A new humanism”.

 

The organisation was in hands of a commissionership with Baron Moens de Fernig as headmaster. Chief architect was J. Van Goethem. 

 

Expo 58 gave more than 41 million visitors a hearty welcome.

 

 

 

NEW - NEW - NEW !!!

Click television for a quick Expo 58 overview with never before seen screenshots taken from private video archive

The Royal Convoy on its way to the Heysel Halls via the Passerel

 

Expensive Expo 58

 

A visit at Expo 58 was not cheap. 

A regular family of four spend an average of

2 260 Belgium francs included 120 Francs  for the tickets. Converted one third monthly salary today.

 

Frequently there had be paid extra for the attractions and not all the pavilions were step for free. For example: people who like to visite the folklore section needed an extra ticket.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Coca Cola ad

On the first day Expo 58 received more than 150.000 enthusiast visitors

 

 

 

 

 

 

on the first day.

The Passerel, a 17 metres high overpass, dominated the foreign section

 

Expo guidefoot bathing at the expo

An instructive guided tour  with an Expo hostess

Temporary lodging houses close to the world fair area

Expo train on the overpass

Belgians discovered at Expo 58 new food like soft-ice and barbecued chicken. Many of them drank their first Coca-Cola there.

Expo parking

110 hectares parking facilities

Expo parking signexpo visitors nearby the ussr paviliontasting of appetizing soft icevisitors at the ussr terrace

Most of the Expo constructions were characterized by modern and never before seen architecture.

Bright firework on the opening and closing day’s

Many solemn parades during the opening ceremony

300 lovely and multiligual hostesses were always ready to help

Logexpo Sign

Expo 58 official figures

 

60 000 000 hours of works for building the expo

41 454 412 people has visited the expo

27 678 590 kilogram of  building material

10 000 000 users for the expotrains

3 000 000 people used the cable lift

1 000 000 cubic metres of ground were moved

1 700 000 cars for the expo parkings

713 664 visitors on one day was the record

100 000 users for the pousse-pousses

62 000 motorcycles received a parking ticket

52 000 pints of beer per day in one café

40 000 busses arrived at the expo

31 000 people became sick

20 000 hardworking cooks and waiters in the restaurants

20 000 workers for the pavilion constructions

2000 worldwide journalists reported hot exponews

2000 children ran lost on the expo

500 gardeners worked only at night

300 charming hostesses for the expo

220 pousse-pousses (motorized three-wheeler)

165 colourful gondola’s on the 4 km long cable-lift traject

111 hectares of parking facilities

105 years was the age of the oldest expo visitor

70 restaurants on the expo site

27 hopeless people did a suicide attempt

20 Mercedes expotrains

8 baby’s were born on the expo terrain

5  people died at the expo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Result of a long day on the expo

For some pavilions there had be paid extra admission

Expo 58 and lodgings

 

One day was not enough to visit the whole exhibition. Many people used the assistant of “Logexpo” a service that arranged lodgements in hotels and motels, on camping's and in private houses.

 

The staff of Logexpo had their  head office in the main hall of the Heysel.

 

Especially for the world fair some inpressive motel complexes was built with each thousands of beds. These motels were very modern for that time and were provided with own shops, cinema’s, recreation possibilities, parking places and petrol stations.

 

 

 

Visitors take a tour with an Expotrain, here seen on the overpass

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