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Author(s): Morgane Besse, Lysiane Kaiser
Contributor: ENSA Marne-la-Vallée

Thinking outside the urban perimeter

The project centres on the study of three stations in Seine-et-Marne, Guérard, Pommeuse and Mouroux, between rural and suburbia. These spaces boast a strong potential, as they are already serviced. However, travelers’ buildings are often closed. These single function car parks only serve part of the population of these villages where users don’t linger. Yet, this railway heritage from the 19th and 20th centuries, which has now become banal, is written into a large-scale history on the connections between the French regions. Ultimately, this ordinary architecture acts as a signal in each of the villages crossed by the train line.

Intervening in train stations allowed consolidating and intensifying the connections of the villages between them and, at larger scale, to criticize the current implantation of services in the countryside and think their access differently. In one same place, the project regroups meeting areas and activities related to the large territory (transformation of agricultural harvests, artisan nurseries, etc.) generating their own economy. By considering the various temporalities of the site (peak hours, empty car parks at weekends), the project reclassifies the train station by enhancing it with other buildings and by rethinking pedestrian paths.

Each train station is a different case study: a deadlock, a site in vis-à-vis and one bordering a road. The demonstration can extend to the scale of France since this escheat can be found in other villages. The project proposed aims to be modest and respectful of the context. It can indeed be built in stages, according to the local means and can serve, complete and optimize what already exists (sustained soils, greenery, travelers’ buildings). We chose an architectural grammar shared by all the stations, ranging from the building system to the types of spaces and atmospheres and design of historical travelers’ buildings. These simple, economical and autonomous modules will be easy to duplicate and assemble according to the site. Each time, this grammar is adapted to the different sites and projects, so that each station completes the other. Car parks are in direct link with these new usages and become the setting for other events (wine fairs at weekends, open air cinemas in the evening…).