SAINT-LOUIS / Gol neighborhood
The perimeter of the Gol neighborhood extends from the Gol canyon to the Papaye canyon and the cane fields in the North. Three major territorial strategies allow for the creation of this future project:
- The canyons: legible marks in the landscape and leverage for future development
- The topography: an east-west logic that is invisible today but can support future project design
- The existing and future clusters: cultural centers, schools, sports and commercial centers as well as historical cores become important guides for the new project.
Pasteur Avenue and its Squares
Pasteur Avenue will once again become a backbone for the neighborhood. With a clearly defined start and ending, the Avenue is articulated and defined by 5 structuring squares.
The Great Threshold
A new North-South edge evolves in step with the emerging diversity of neighborhoods through which it passes. This threshold is a way provide broad open space and at the same time emphasize the exceptional natural characteristics of the site.
A reorganization of pathways within the neighborhood allows for new connections between points of interest that help to define the inhabitants’ trajectories.
This new armature allows a reconsideration of different scales of the project and touches upon all the major project themes: from local to territorial scales and from landscape to urban problematics.
DIEPENBEEK / Campus
An eco-campus for Diepenbeek
The continuous development of the site of the campus in Diepenbeek demands a reflection on larger scales. Occupying a strategic position between Hasselt, Genk and Diepenbeek, the site is related to larger-scale environmental conditions including ecologically active areas and flood zones. Thus the project is conceptualized at a regional scale rather than delimited by the site of today’s campus. Various elements inform this new masterplan that will structure the campus’ growth for the coming decade: water, ecology, slow and public transport, built structures.
A central urban axis will organize the expansion of the campus. This new east-west backbone, largely composed of public space, is a great connector and collector that weaves together academic faculties, research institutes and campus services buildings. This central structure will act as the new spine of the campus, welcoming students to professional life, cultural and social activities.
The spatial strategy for the expansion of the campus is inspired by the three characteristic landscapes of the site: the forests and lakes along the Miezerikbeek, the meadows of the Demer Valley and the agricultural fields surrounded by planted dykes. Diverse typologies and principles are developed in order to reinforce these landscapes, all with respect for their contributions to enriching biodiversity.
As a fundamental strategy, the campus will transform by adjusting mobility and parking strategies, introducing a north-south connection of public spaces and a hub for public transport and by reinforcing the characteristic landscapes of the territory.
The first expansion of the campus will be structured within the landscape of the agricultural fields and planted dykes, where the central east-west axis will be densified and actively programmed.
LIBOURNE / Quays of the confluence
The quays of the city of Libourne, historically built as a infrastructural site for the wine trade has become little more than a large parking lot over time. Rethinking the future of these quays as an interface between city-nature was the subject of an initial competition and now of Agence Ter’s work.
The design team is working closely with the city of Libourne in its mission to commemorate the city’s architectural and fluvial heritage. The project of the quays, now in its final phase of construction, focuses on pedestrian and cyclist networks. A grand promenade links the river to the city center, designed to stimulate activities that recall the historic dynamics of the port. Alongside this promenade, a wide, planted allee invites pedestrians to continue their stroll towards the bridge of Fronsac.
Fundamental principles of the project include a continuous ground surface to ease wayfinding, clear sightlines towards the water, programming of the quays with urban activities (sports, festivities, green beach, boat rides, etc.) and the enhancement of the natural banks with wetland gardens. Restoration of the banks takes into account the tidal rhythms of the water with the design of a micro-topography and a diversified planting palette including wetland gardens, tree alles with dry meadows, inaccessible lawns, irrigated lawns, etc.
Thus the project proposes both new urban life on the river banks with welcoming public spaces while it stimulates a new urban nature connected to water. A coexistence between floodable areas and active program is developed.
STRASBOURG / 2 banks development
The project of the Two Banks Territory is the last phase of the Strasbourg’s ambitious policy to reclaim the spaces of the former port. Starting from the city zones of Heyritz, Malraux and Danube, this dynamic is amplified by the extension of the tramway line D to Kehl. With a façade of the city along the water’s edge and a new entrance to the metropolis on the Rhine, Strasbourg has initiated a project of an exceptional dimension.
The project is developed along three structural axes.
First and foremost, the conditions that allow for the coexistence between the city and the port are created. The emergence of this hybrid urban tissue where housing and commercial activities go hand in hand starts with the urban integration of infrastructures, with soft landscape treatment to interfaces and the programming of activities in the ground floor spaces.
Secondly, the project seeks to develop an urban strategy based on the pre-existent landscape base. The Rhine territory is structured by water declined in all its forms. A set of canals, docks and basins give form and direction to the urbanization. Public spaces are deployed along the banks, reinforcing their role as structuring urban connectors. These spaces allow the development of a green landscape structure on a metropolitan scale and assure the installation an ambitious slow transportation system.
Finally, the project of the “ZAC Deux-Rives” is witness to a new way of living and of using public space. An adaptable large square adapts to varied uses and events, while ample space and sport facilities are available to encourage active sports. Furthermore, we see the emergence of a new type of public space, at the same time natural & wild, extensive, and influenced by the river, that is offered here as a benefit for the residents.
WUHAN / Garden
Chinese and French cultural symbols are merging to create a contemporary low-lying garden; a space that invites an intellectual and cultural understanding while senses and emotions are being stimulated.
The heart of the garden is lowered by some 3-4 meters in order to symbolize the search of pure water in the depths of the earth. Gabion walls, connected by layers of grey bricks, evoke geological stratification. This action of excavating, of descending into the soil generates a vertical relationship: that of the earth and the sky, framed from the interior. The garden, far from the noise of the city, is enclosed and calm. As in the traditional Chinese gardens, the shade provided by walls and plantations creates an agreeable microclimate during the dry summers of Wuhan.
The translucent wall of bamboo, combined with dense plantations of this same plant, creates a space of shadows in balance, a labyrinthine place traversed by metal and stone paths of stepping stones which invite a slow pace. Three different “skylights” present water with different static and dynamic accents, their woven bamboo structures reinforcing the link between the earth and sky.
The dim light, the bamboo and the water come together to generate a special atmosphere in this sunken garden.
BEGLES / Route de Toulouse
The project accompanies the urban axis of the Route de Toulouse with an avenue for tramway, pedestrians and cyclists within a linear park that leads to the « green delta ».
The Avenue Promenade, formerly a secondary access way, will become a central, urban space linking the northern and southern clusters with a calming landscape character. The treatment of this Avenue Promenade will be in continuity with the landscape development of the park of Mussonville and provides natural spaces at the heart of the neighbourhood.
The new quarter of the development zone ZAC de la Route de Toulouse stretches over 670m from North to South, with a width varying between 150m and 6.5m. This urban project defines 3 sequences and the strategic orientations proposed in the project aim to contextualize the Route de Toulouse, based on the surrounding major landscape structures and current land use. The two important nodes of Terre Sud and Place Aristide Briand are treated as high intensity public spaces. These spaces will be pedestrianized, to assure the continuities of circulations and the development of strong spatial identities.
BRUSSELS / Metropolitan Landscapes : Molenbeek Valley
The Molenbeek Valley is a historical landscape, rich in natural environments and activities, and reflects the opportunities and threats for the position of landscape and (peripheral) open space within the metropolitan development of Brussels. With its position between the regions of Flanders, and the Brussels Capital Region, the valley is marked by an administrative and political rupture in addition to the large contrast between city and countryside. Therefore, the Molenbeek valley is a hinge territory, offering much potential to become an instigator for the development of tomorrow’s peripheral Brussels.
In this research by design project, the urban fabric is reflected and shaped by its landscape structures, primarily read in section. The strategy for the development of the Molenbeek Valley is based upon the topographical characteristics of the site. This leads to the definition of multiple morpho-typologies of open space depending on their height within the valley structure: hilltop, cascade and low valley. These functional as well as spatial typologies translate into locations: for a (metropolitan) landmark, for an intensive confrontation with the urban tissue or for a natural corridor.
The overall vision for the Valley is to create a productive park for Brussels West, inducing a mind shift in the metropolis and allowing the urgent problematic of food sustainability to become visible. The park will introduce short circuits, and will combine ecological, productive and public spaces into one coherent (peri-urban) landscape structure. The relation with the surrounding tissue is essential in this respect. Diverse pilot projects have been pre-defined for the different sequences (rural, hinge or urban) of the park.
The metropolitan landscape of the Molenbeek Valley becomes a hinge and lever for the development of the Northwestern periphery of Brussels.
CAMPINAS / Sede Bradina Farm
This project is situated in a valley territory of 101 ha, structured by hills and watercourses, revealing the surrounding dense urban landscape of Campinas. The large dimension of the project allows for a reinvention of an urban model, where the revitalization of the soil becomes the base of a new urban ecosystem.
Firstly, an augmented biodiversity, the permeability of the ground and an adapted water and flood risk management, a climatic comfort and a control of energy resources are proposed. As a result, a new urban model is articulated where density and environmental equilibrium can coexist.
Secondly, the introduction of new uses, of neighbourhoods, of new ways of living are developed in a direct relationship with the landscape. A program of 12 200 housing units, amenities, offices and commercial spaces are designed as “La Cidade dos Sentidos” (The City of Senses), together with its “Art of Life”. The preservation of the geomorphology of the site and its landscapes is necessary to create the vital prerequisites that will structure the essential elements of the city: a diversity of landscapes and atmospheres throughout the urban structure.
“La Cidade dos Sentidos” is a sustainable city and at the same time a place where people want to live. The “Art of Life” is the base concept and reflection that allows for the creation of an architectural diversity, an urban mix and uses of the public realm. The art of life is also reflected in the creation of user-friendly, warm and qualitative public spaces, that allow for a new culture of well-being (gastronomy, physical activities, leisure, …), all woven in a dense urban tissue, which allows for a continuity with the existing density of the city. The qualities of the natural environments allow for a counter-balance for the active and economic dynamisms of the high-density fabric.