The proposals by ECDM Architectes for the Zac Seguin consisted of both a high rise and a non high rise building which were both designed as individual elements in an urban mixed composite, where residential, commercial and green spaces combine to form a whole. In their projects, there is a firm horizontal component which proposes a frame, defining the boundaries of the park, the Seine and its emergences, punctuations designed in resonance with other high points on the bend in the river, such as the Horizons tower or the buildings to come on the Seguin Island. More images and architects’ description after the break.
The creation of an emergent element is an opportunity to rethink the relationship between the new neighborhood of Le Trapèze and the Grand Paris area. This punctuation highlights the metropolitan character of the site by creating a landmark which can be viewed from afar. Because of its status, size and the culture, Le Trapèze is a unique area within Paris. The site is emblematic of the changes that have transformed our industrial cities, of paradigm shifts that have enabled the implementation of a highly complex urban strategy, taking into account the needs of a postmodern society.
Therefore, the verticality of the building must express an area where the urban landscape frames a careful balance between mineral and vegetable, between planes and voids imbued with the complexity of a dense and attractive area. As the valley of the Seine crosses Paris, it is punctuated by towers. One thinks of La Defense, the Front de Seine, the Eiffel Tower, the neighborhood surrounding Gare de Lyon, as well as many other architectural interventions dispersed along the river’s fluvial geography and landscape favoring emergent typologies.
In the site next to the river, it seemed essential that the collusion between emergent elements came together to break away from the general pattern of the neighborhood. Both projects are designed in relation to a specific horizon line, referencing both the context of the district and the grand landscape.
We thought of our projects as entities in resonance with existing architectural points: the Horizons tower, the top of the Pont de Sèvres and the towers to come on the Ile Seguin. These three entities form a triangle, with which our project intersects as an extremity. Therefore, the project is about offering a new center of gravity and a principle of volumetric gradation which establish a link with the buildings erected along the wharf and complicity with the bow of the Ile Seguin.
Guided by this, we moved the density of our project to the north-west side of the plot to establish a link with the buildings along the shore, and so as not to generate visual competition with the Ile Seguin. The bow of the Ile Seguin has a geographic potency which leaves no room for what would be a de facto substitute.
The shape of the plot, a rounded triangle, does not constitute a bow, any analogy to boats and skippers would be fortuitous, besides, a trapeze has no bow. Therefore our projects are designed to frame views and perspectives by creating a dividing line at the junction of the park and the wharf.
Program requirements have led us to develop two projects of different types, structured by two distinct approaches to provide privacy and ensure the safety of persons and property. Refuting any formal preoccupations, we have chosen to develop two projects, two designs structured by two regulatory height constraint possibilities. Architect: ECDM Architectes Location: Boulogne-Billancourt, France Project Manager: Jeremy Bernier et Kikyun Kim Program: Offices building IGH (tall building) and office building Client: Nexity Area: 60 000m² SHON Cost: 150 M € HT Competition: 2011