newsletter n°32

june 2016

Summer is here and our first newsletter 2016 comes with it. Our big news is the arrival on our desks of a third Greater Paris Express station whilst, at the same time, the first commission advances rapidly and through BIM: our two stations and the Line 15 maintenance depot.

a third Greater Paris Express station : Massy-Palaiseau on line 18

The Société du Grand Paris persues and will soon complete the attribution of design commissions for the Greater Paris Express, the largest project in Europe. Line 18 which links Orly to Versailles via the Plateau de Saclay was conferred last winter and we had great pleasure being appointed within a group that includes Ingerop, Artelia, Arcadis, 2/3/4, Feichtinger, Vezzoni, JFS and, of course, Richez_Associés on the Massy-Palaiseau Station.

Our tender stage proposal: in the centre of the extensive railway plateau of the vast existing transport hub (2 RER, 1 TGV, almost 30 bus lines), a large translucent vault springs out of the ground; it follows the route of travellers from the below ground metro platforms to the footbridges that span and dominate the tracks to become a strong emblem of the Massy-Palaiseau transport campus. The preliminary design proceeds along several scenarios and delivery of the line is planned for 2024, that is, two years after our stations on Line 15: Champigny-Centre and Bry-Villiers-Champigny and 4 years after the Maintenance and Storage Depot, also in Champigny.

Richez Associes - a third Greater Paris Express station : Massy-Palaiseau on line 18

Montpellier Grisettes, labelled EcoQuartier

Just after publication of our newsletter last December, the Ministère du Logement, de l’Egalité des territoires et de la Ruralité in the Cité de l’Architecture awarded the EcoQuartier label to half-a-dozen neighbourhoods of which only two new neighbourhoods, both in Montpellier; Parc Marianne (Architecture Studio) and Les Grisettes (Richez_Associés). To our great satisfaction... and to our surprise; Marc Lehman (AS) nudged Thomas Richez after the ceremony... weren't our neighbourhoods always been eco-neighbourhoods? Well yes, so it seemed to me, too... After investigation, they were shortlisted in the Ecoquartier Awards which identified promising projects, and then were EcoQuartier certified in recognition of attainment of this approach! The capital Q obviously makes a difference.

Richez Associes - Montpellier Grisettes, labelled EcoQuartier

Masterplanning stadiums, from Le Havre to the Arabian Peninsula

Also last December: the landscape project designed for the Océane Stadium in Le Havre that combines large white concrete elements, planted parking spaces and gabions that accommodate lizards, a protected species identified on the site before construction work, won first prize in the "Promising Project" category of the 2015 Concours Infrastructures pour la Mobilité, la Biodiversité & le Paysage award organized by IDRRIM, the estimed French Institute in the domain of transport infrastructure.

Undertaken for the Le Havre Agglomeration, during this project we worked alongside SCAU, designers of the 25,000-seat blue stadium. Their 98 World Cup Stade de France in Saint-Denis brings SCAU to often work on these projects and, since Le Havre, we are often invited to join them on the masterplanning and design of surrounding spaces. So it was on a competition in Casablanca, then subsequently on a project cancelled after the collapse of oil prices in the centre of Saudi Arabia before developing with them a new project in the same region on a confidential site. On the programme: concrete paving, palm trees and refined levelling work to make best use of scarce rainfall.

Richez Associes - Masterplanning stadiums, from Le Havre to the Arabian Peninsula

the competition gallery

Competition news is firstly the images of the Palais des Congrès designed by Paul Andreu in Cap d'Agde submitted last December. At the entrance to the 1970s resort, in place of a roundabout, two perforated aluminium volumes alight amongst the pines and set the stage for the Port-Mont Saint-Loup skyline, the ancient volcano that gave the cape its topography.

Richez Associes - the competition gallery

Also, a project in Avon developed for Eiffage Immobilier: nearby to the forest in Fontainebleau, 140 housing units and 4000m² office and retail space mount the slope with their 4 volumes of white concrete and timber screens and provide the neighborhood with a garden in belvedere.

Richez Associes -

And furthermore, after the competition won last year to span the rail tracks from Austerlitz in Vitry-Ardoines, now complemented with the commission to design public spaces in the adjoining neighbourhood undertaken by TGTFP, the competition for the Pleyel urban overpass in Saint-Denis in association with Marc Mimram - still not yet awarded and therefore no images!

But especially in St Omer, in association with Nathalie T'Kint (Lille), a station conversion project: the generous 2000m² of the 1902 building are now superfluous since 300m² is sufficient for station operations. Place for all the facilities of the digital eco-city of tomorrow: co-working space, fab lab, service centre and... a day nursery. We proposed in the passenger hall of large proportions, a huge inhabited volume: the new spaces located within the listed architecture cohabit within without disturbing it. The project was declared the winner and the renovated building will be completed in 2018. Enjoy!

Richez Associes -

and in Shanghai, a tramway

After a first wave of pilot tramway projects built very quickly yet not always appriporiatly located and not very successful, some Chinese clients wanted to benefit from the French experience. The Jinshan new town south of Shanghai commissioned a feasibility study for a landfill area by the sea. The key to success is obviously the implementation of a overall city and transport design strategy... that we try to get across to the Design Institute in charge of the project!