Corinne Vezzoni et Associés have been selected ahead of Rudy Ricciotti, Atelier Christian de Portzamparc and Agence Nicolas Michelin et Associés in a competition to design the new "neighborhood of creativity and knowledge" on the site of a former hospital in Toulon in Southern France. Working in association with Devillers et Associés, Corinne Vezzoni's design envisions 15,500 square meters across five buildings: the TPM School of Art and Design, the Kedge International Business School, a media library, a company incubator devoted to digital technologies and new offices for the General Council of Var.
The neighborhood occupies a key location in Toulon, at the junction between the city's upper town (designed under Baron Haussmann in the 19th century) and the 20th century city. The two areas "will symbolically merge in the future neighborhood of creativity and knowledge, whose contemporary architecture embody the ambitions for the future of the whole urban area," claims Corinne Vezzoni et Associés.
The design includes the restructuring of the city's Jardin Alexandre 1er, which will be extended and improved to open the garden to the surrounding area. At the site's northern corner, the TPM School of Art and Design will form the emblematic building of the neighborhood, a faceted white block, while the Kedge International Business School will occupy the neighboring building featuring an impressive cantilever which frames the access to the garden. At the northern side of the garden, the new regional media library will be incorporated into the wings of an existing chapel.
Construction of the design is planned to start in early 2016, with completion scheduled for 2019.
Architects: Vezzoni et Associés, Devillers et Associés (associated architects).
Landscapers: HYL Hannetel & Yver
Engineering firms: Aredet (Fluids, HQE standard, fire security), Ingenierie 84 (Structural), Cerretti (Roads and main networks), CEC (Economist and project planner), Ginger Cebtp (Geotechnics), Francis Fontanez (Acoustics), 8’18’’ (Lighting designs).
Client: Toulon Provence Méditerrannée (TPM)
Clients for buildings: TPM (TPM School of art and design, Incubator for digital companies); City of Toulon (Media library), CCIV (Kedge international business school), CG 83 (New offices for the administration Conseil général du Var).
Project area: 15,500 sqm
Project cost: €61 million (before tax)