Architects: TVK Trévelo & Viger-Kohler Architectes Urbanistes
Location: Paris, France
Landscaping: Matha SCHWARTZ and AREAL
Lighting concept: Yann KERSALE , AIK
Structure / Circulation: Atec, bet / Citec, bet circulation
Climat Engineering: TransSolar, klimaengineering
Consultation: Ville Ouverte
Project year: 2010 – 2011
Photographs: Courtesy of TVK
The Place de la République is situated in a very special location within the city of Paris. The square could potentially represent one of the city’s major monuments of the 21st century.
This potential should not be wasted and the future plans for the space must be designed for the long term, and thus should be able to accommodate evolutions over time. Today, though, this potential suffers and remains unexploited. There are several reasons to explain why; the marked domination of traffic circulation over all other activities, the indiscernible pedestrian pathways which are parceled and static.
Today, the quality of the Place de la République is subjected to the typology of a traffic circle. Now it is a matter of creating a public space for pedestrians, as large as possible, and one that is directly connected to the façades along one side of the square.
The square is dissymmetrical in both directions, and this form is particularly important from an environmental and climatic point of view. This environmental approach is outlined in a few simple principles:
-Reinforce the presence of greenery and produce a unified landscape with maximum area.
-Let the sun penetrate and position the pedestrian pathways in the areas that receive the most sunlight.
-Let the warm summer winds penetrate for better aeration of the city and for the dilution of pollutants.
-Block the uncomfortable cold winter winds.
We are proposing to create a vast public space reserved for pedestrians and cyclists, and to create a connection to the square at the north-east border. In order to create this link, it is necessary to cut the circulation of traffic on the street Faubourg du Temple at its intersection with the street Yves Toudic, and to extend the public space up to this point. In this way the future Place de la République would be a large free space of 2 hectares, opening onto the main boulevards. The future Place de la République must have a sense of unity. Unity is provided here in its spatial composition: one unified flow of movement, as well as for the work on the land.