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Masterplan for Marseille’s Vieux Port / Foster + Partners

Courtesy of Foster + Partners
Courtesy of Foster + Partners

One of the greatest Mediterranean Ports is about to be transformed. Work has begun on the Old Port of Marseille as part of a series of regeneration projects to be completed in time for the city’s inauguration as European Capital of Culture in 2013. Based on French landscape architect Michel Desvigne’s and London-based architects Foster + Partners’ competition-winning master plan, the project will reclaim the quaysides as a civic space, creating new informal venues for performances and events, while traffic is relocating traffic to a safe, semi-pedestrianised public realm. Lord Foster stated, “I know the harbor at Marseille well and it is a truly grand space. This project is a great opportunity to enhance it using very simple means, to improve it with small, discreet pavilions for events, for markets, for special occasions. Our approach has been to work with the climate, to create shade, but at the same time to respect the space of the harbor – just making it better.”