Creil is a town of 35.000 inhabitants, situated in the Northern countryside of Paris. Different neighborhoods coexist in Creil, whose historical core lies on both sides of the Oise River. The construction of an Urban Ramp reveals the purpose of creating a brand new connection between the densely populated neighborhoods of the Rouher highs and the town center. This “plateau” stands forty meters higher than the urban core, suffering from a physical separation, which seems to reflect the existing social gaps within the community.
The project was led with determination by the team of Espace Libre, in close collaboration with the Eurovia Contracting Group, and the support of the municipality of Creil. It constitutes a complex link, at the same time geographical and morphological, making possible a number of new uses and activities in-between these urban poles. A majestic Ramp, made in steel and wood, lifts up between the trees crowns, and joins a suspended sightseeing point, at the center of a 1,2 kilometers path along the woody slope.
The subtle trace of the Ramp gives value to the existing landscape, and at the same time it improves the comfort of the public space, by the respect of the disabled access standards. The integration of the paths reveals the characteristics of a remarkable existing landscape.
The 1.2 kilometers path is marked with places of interest, meeting and pause:
– the High Sightseeing point;
– the Clearings in the Laversine wood;
– the Crossroads Sightseeing point;
– the Hiker’s square;
– the Ramp.
The Urban Ramp project involves many coordinated actions. The pedestrian paths system has been improved; the existing landscape qualities have been enhanced, and the environmental balance of the site has been preserved. The flora and fauna of the woody slope have been carefully studied. This sensible approach allowed the reduction of the impacts during the construction works. Furthermore, it facilitated the constitution of an ecological data base, which has been used for a didactical program of signage and information.
This socially and environmentally sensible approach allows at the same time the best aesthetic and sensorial experience of a calm walk across the woody slope. The design of the Urban Ramp make up with the constituent elements of the Creil landscape, and puts them in a dynamic sequence, in the manner of an urban travelling.
Design: Espace Libre with Eurovia Contracting Group (Eurovia, Groupe Loiseleur Paysage, EGIS, Eiffage Energie, Marcanterra)
Location : Creil – Allée Nelson, France
Design Year: 2013
Year of Construction: 2017
Surface: 1,7 hectares (largest design scope : 4,4 hectares)
Budget: 3.700.000 €
Image credits: Julien Falsimagne