The Haute Deûle River Banks development project leans on recognition of the site qualities that form its basis and its enrichments. The water presence is undeniable, as much in the district history as in its present-day configuration, despite a loss of recognition. This project for a sustainable district surrounding the old textile mill today transformed in a consortium of high technologies of communication leans on the memory traces in order to apply itself in these inhabited places identity, and at the same time, to revitalize this expression of federating water in the new development. The project affirms the strength of the Haute Deûle canal, taking up the canals and irrigation ditches old lines and taking further the principle of rainwater collecting on the whole district surfaces. The water station square offers a convivial space in the traces of the inland water shipping that forged the identity of the Bois Blanc district. The water garden, that plays the storage and phytoremideator role, evolves with rain rhythms and becomes an emblematic place for this work on water.

The old textile mill Le Blan-Lafont (now “Euratechnologies” building) forms undeniably the focal point, through its dimensions, its place in the quarter, and its avocation of a prosperous industrial past. It brings this built ensemble together with the public spaces that border it, the large lawn and the water garden in the south, the old dance hall and Bretagne square in the north. Interactivity and complementarities are created between the building dedicated to high-tech companies and the public spaces, open to a broader public.

Along the Great Lawn and the water garden, directed towards the Haute Deûle canal, the north south circulation axis simultaneously represents one means of expressing water in the district, an essential route into Euratechnologies heart and a link toward Lille and Lomme neighborhoods. The new lift bridge crosses the bras de Canteleu to ensure the link with the island of Bois Blanc and allows the waterway to rediscover the central role that it must play in the district organization. The extension of rue du Pont à Fourchon fits in with the urban history and respects the strip parceling and the existing walls. The river banks development offers an extraordinary opportunity for the requalification of public spaces of the Lomme Marsh and manages to allow a new service quality however, without, depriving this quarter of the charm that resides in the proportions of the streets bordered with worker houses. This garden street expresses the territorial dimension of the valley of the Deûle and offers a linear park typology to serve the district heart while respecting its working-class built typology.

In 2009 this project was awarded with the Ecological District Label on the theme of ‘Water’. It also won the French 2010 Prize for Urban Development.

Landscape architect : Atelier des paysages Bruel-Delmar
Commissioned by: SORELI for the cities of Lille and Lomme and the urban community LMCU
Area : 25 000 m² (public spaces design of Euratechnologies Development Zone)
Cost: 28 M€
Design & Implementation period: 2008-2015
Status: Works in Progress
Ecological District Prize 2009; Urban Development Prize 2010
Photos & text : Atelier de paysages Bruel-Delmar

Project Team:
Atelier de Paysages Bruel-Delmar – city planners & landscape architects (for all the public spaces and the lift bridge)
Profil Ingénierie – Roads system and urban public utilities
G. Pilet – lighting engineer
Venna – engineering & water supply system (Lift Bridge)
Stucky – engineering consultant – hydraulics and concrete structure (lift bridge)
AGH haut debit, (internet high speed)

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