Grand Paris Express' public spaces workshop

Project

Design and follow-up of guidelines for the Grand Paris Express’ future public spaces

Location

All of 65 Grand Paris Express’ future stations

Year

2016

Client

Public spaces unit of the Société du Grand Paris

Design team

NP2F (head architect)/ Bassinet Turquin (landscaper) / Concorde (geographer) / 8'18" (lighting) / TETRA (sociologist) / Pascale Legué (anthropologist) / Pascale Josse, Gérard Bouché (ergonomist)

Mission

International benchmarking, study on prospective uses of public space, coordination of a partnership-based approach, production of a didactic and pedagogic document intended to all institutional and political stakeholders

Project status

Competition (finalist)

 

Despite already boasting the involvement of several designers (architecture, signage, urban furniture, artistic direction), the Grand Paris Express authority decided to entrust the design of all future stations’ public spaces to a new multidisciplinary team. The team is expected to devise guidelines able to contribute to the establishment of a common thread both visual and functional throughout the public spaces of the 65 stations constitutive of this large network, providing a homogenous response to issues of fluidity on the route, quality of shared facilities, security, management, maintenance, but also of retaining a sense of unifying architecture and landscape of the metropolis’ public spaces.

Our team offers to act as guarantor for the identity of the wider Paris’ public spaces, encouraging an umbrella vision rather than issuing orders. Its strategy aims to work collectively to achieve a certain art de vivre within le Grand Paris. Breaking away from technical concepts such as 'passenger interchange' and 'multimodality’ or ‘platforms', these future spaces are considered places for daily life. Our method is based on a very long-term time scale, proposing an evolutionary development strategy capable of being realized. The very relevance of future public areas demands taking the unforeseeable into account, to allow time and space for certain potential uses to define themselves. In this attempt to bestow flexibility and suppleness to the long-term vision, experimentation is an essential tool. The establishment of an international benchmark, 'oval' table discussions (both round in the sense of discussion, and rectangular in the sense of focused direction), the assumption that the spaces at stake are pre-wired opportunities rather than rigid and pre-ordained, and finally the instigation of a 'design thinking' methodology, constitute the cornerstones of our proposition.

© NP2F