The competition winning proposal for the Terrace 9 Housing Complex in Nanterre, France by Atelier Zündel Cristea aims to restore the human scale and legibility necessary for creating large and enjoyable public spaces, capable of attracting people from beyond the city and the Hauts de Seine region. They do this by taking into account the urban project’s varying relief, both natural and artificial, with the coexistence of road and rail transportation networks and the structures of colossal scale such networks required. More images and architects’ description after the break. Extending out from the axis of La Défense, the site encompasses an exceptionally vast terrain, in which a train classification yard, railroad site, segment of highway, areas used for unregulated parking, all remain to be urbanized. The urban block making up the project is bounded to the north by an “uncommon walkway,” the artificial garden that covers the RER A suburban train tunnel, to the south by the 9th Terrace, to the east by a staircase with vegetation, and to the west by the Boulevard des Provinces Françaises. The block is comprised essentially of residential housing and premises for businesses and activities. At this precise spot, the RER A resurfaces from underground, strongly conditioning the future architectural project.
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