The Cannes Town Hall and Sncf Real Estate have signed an agreement for an urban development project for 23 hectares (57 acres) on the edge of the Mediterranean at the site of “Cannes Marchandises,” the Cannes train station in La Bocca. In part unused for decades, this important urban site in southwest France is now unblocked.
At the heart of this working class neighborhood in Cannes and the Thales Alenia Space site, these 23 hectares (57 acres) are in the perfect location. Occupied for centuries by mostly abandoned warehouses and multiple unused train rails and facilities, it is a space that will be completely redeveloped.
The site is now unblocked through a protocol signed by Mayor David Lisnard, and the Sncf, represented by Sophie Boissard, General Director of Sncf Real Estate. After long discussions, an agreement for an urban development project was reached between the Town Hall and the Sncf, owners of the land. In a report, the mayor explained that he “hopes to reinforce attractiveness by improving its aesthetic and use of space through urban development and the diversification of activities that will create jobs. Particularly jobs in nautical, artisanal, cinematographic audiovisual design, and urban logistics sectors.”
The first step towards this goal was taken in the beginning of 2014 with an urban development project. Voted on at the end of 2014, six hectares (fifteen acres) of “Ansaldobreda,” were to be redeveloped. This site was the location of the old railway maintenance plant initially owned by CLBI, which closed in 2012 after it was taken over by the italian Ansaldobreda group. On this site, integrated within the “Cannes Marchandises” area, housing units and businesses are planned on the Tonner facade, while 5 of the 6 hectares (12 to 15 acres) will be turned into economic and industrial zones. One part will be dedicated to boating enterprises, while an artisan village will be on the other side.
The Bocca Cabana Revitalization Project
No project for the entire 23 hectares (57 acres) has been presented yet. As a general indication, Cannes Town Hall shares common interests with the Sncf in developing its real estate assets, in particular the Cannes Marchandises site. Located at the heart of the Cannes' La Bocca, this complex is at the intersection between local businesses and the industrial and logistics activities already present in the north. These uses will be reinforced with the development of the future media technology park around the Cannes Thales Alenia Space factory (the only complete satellite assembly site in Europe.) But most importantly, Cannes Merchandise is open on the seaside and is part of the Bocca Cabana revitalization project which plans to develop and beautify this portion of the coastline.
Thus, this space has true urban development potential. But it still interests the Sncf, which, hopes to maintain its rail activities. In particular, a new service with LGV Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur connecting Marseille and Nice.
What would you want to see in a new urban development by the sea? How do you think that the agreement between Sncf and the city will impact the development of the site? Share your thoughts and your city's stories in the comments area below.
Original article, originally published in French, here.
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