Team Representative: Cyrille Lamouche (FR) – architect; Associates: Guillaume Chatelain (FR), Cécilia Robergeaud (FR) – architects
115 rue Oberkampf, 75011 Paris – France
+33 6 68 53 83 51 – firstname.lastname@example.org
G. Chatelain, C. Lamouche and C. Robergeaud
1. How did you form the team for the competition?
We met in Strasbourg (FR) while we were studying architecture. After graduating in 2008 and 2009, we worked in different practices in Paris. Wishing to share our skills and having a complementary approach of the project, we teamed up for the Europan 12 competition and chose the site of Milano where one of us is currently working.
2. How do you define the main issue of your project, insisting on how you answered on this session main topic: adaptability and urban rhythms?
The proposal for the renewal of the “Porto di Mare” area is considered as a new centrality taking part in the green belt of Milan.
The development of a mall as an extension of the existing park ensures the continuity of the green systems towards the centre of Milan. This rural boulevard is the backbone of the project: it generates a mobility network and gathers social hubs. As a genuine link between the various points of interest, it presents identified sequences, opens on the landscape and offers a new identity to the area.
Based on the existing structure of the site, the project allows a temporal flexibility and becomes integrated into the context with the ambition to merge with the rural landscape. The proposal introduces a new way to inhabit the transition of the urban fabric and the countryside of Milan.
3. How did this issue and the questions raised by the site mutation meet?
The site is currently partially isolated and difficult to access. It includes illegal and deteriorated buildings and polluted areas formerly used as landfill. However, the area has all the assets for its future development.
We chose to preserve various elements, for example the sport facilities and buildings of architectural quality, and to include existing agricultural zones in the project.
It is important to quickly start a participatory development of the area with an urbanization allowing temporal flexibility while adapting to the existing fabric.
4. Have you already treated this issue previously and could you present some reference projects that inspired yours?
- The ephemeral installation of green spaces on the Champs Elysées in Paris (FR) in 2010 and Barcelona’s Rambla (ES), to create the mall as a backbone of the project;
- Ecodistricts in general, for example the one of Viikki in Finland, which has a strong relation to the countryside, and the one of Freiburg im Breigsau in Germany for its mobility network and its approach to sustainable development;
- Existing elements used by Milan’s inhabitants, for example the community gardens on the limits of the city, the pedestrian and bicycle network already in use but in need of greater visibility, and external balconies to access dwellings.
5. Today –within the era of an economic crisis and sustainability– the urban-architectural project should reconsider its production method in time; how did you integrate this issue in your project?
The mall, backbone of the project, is punctuated with four different sequences defined by the existing facilities, allowing it to change according to the use of the inhabitants. Furthermore, the project is based on the existing structure, which enables temporal flexibility according to financial resources and land availability.
The project was thereby intended to be as economical as possible. For example, external parking is recommended on the project area. It can be easily treated in order to obtain a natural aspect and to become integrated into the existing green landscape. This also allows rainwater infiltration, completed by water collecting ditches.
6. Is it the first time you have been awarded a prize at Europan? How could this help you in your professional career?
This is the first time we have taken part to the Europan competition, and it is a very pleasant surprise to win it. We hope that it will be a springboard for our professional work both in France and abroad.