2007 – The Green District _ Reims France
Program Housings and city planning
Place Reims, France
Team Eric Cassar, Toshibau Kudo, Elsie Vlachos
Owners Europan 09 France General principles Housings floating in green spaces and not green spaces around housings
We want to create continuity with the forest on the other side of the motorway and benefit from soil fertility but also to add housings in the area. The objective is to avoid the splitting role of this motorway, creating a peaceful area with housing into landscape strips floating in the middle of the trees.
We mix a street urbanism with a CIAM one. Implantation comes from a historic implantation then it is modified to adapt itself to the context and to express its own morphological writing. That way, the buildings give an identity to the district. They are a maximum of 3 floors high, near one to each other to create a small scale urbanism. General density avoids desert and unsafe areas. Free from the ground, apartments take benefit of a sunny environment while being immerge into vegetation. Building roofs are sometimes private (private terraces or gardens) and sometimes public (promenade). Superposition of public spaces gives different points of view to walkers and it permits to mix different circulation flows. Public spaces are merging in harmony into the vegetation : green town.
The project integrates a notion of sustainable development. The vegetation cover of the buildings permits to keep and reuse water and it acts as a retarding in case of stormy shower. It brings a thermal and hydraulic mass. Thermal regulation is done by a special tree implantation. The leaves protect people from the hot spring sun. They fall in winter and let heat enter inside. Every building is almost entirely prefabricated with light and recyclable material.