At the location of the old Rungis Train Station, in the 13th arrondissement of Paris, France, the Semapa erected the first ecodistrict of the capital. It includes clean transportation, rainwater collection machines, sustainable materials and efficient thermal insulation. Designed in 2005, the development was much anticipated for its methods of development, communication, and construction.
The new Parisian district was inaugurated on May 30, 2015 by Anne Hidalgo, mayor of Paris. Built on the old train station, bordering the little belt railway, on 4 hectares (9.9 acres); it was designed following sustainable development principles. Entrusted in 2004 to the local government organization for development, Sempa (Société d'étude, de maitrise d'ouvrage et d'aménagement de la ville de Paris), the project took 10 years to be realized.
The Stakes of Sustainable Development and Social Diversity
“The stakes in this project were double” reminds Jean-Francois Gueullette, director of Semapa, “it aimed to erase the barrier created by the railway which divided the space and made commuting difficult, but it was also meant to establish social and generational diversity.” The ecodistrict includes 19,000 square meters (20,778 square yards) of offices which were developed by Icade, a residence of 180 housing units for students and researchers, 95 housing units for families, a child care center with 66 cribs and 20 beds, a nursing home (Ehpad) specialized in the care of patients suffering from Alzheimer’s, a community center, sports equipment and a garden of 5,000 square meters (5,468 square yards).
“The design of the district, coordinated by the architect Bruno Fortier, is based on the concept of open blocks which allow light to enter, unlike Haussmann urban forms where only the facades facing the street are accessible from the public space” specifies Jean-Francois Gueullette. In financial terms, an 83 Million Euro investment was necessary to complete the subdivision and infrastructure development. The sale of the parcels generated 94 million euros, giving a positive sale of about 11 Million Euros.
Are there any ecodistricts developed in your city? What are their main features? What is their impact on the local economy?
Original article, originally published in French, here.
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