In November 2014, the city of Paris launched an innovative architectural competition entitled “Réinventer Paris” – a call for architectural proposals to rebuild and renovate a number of disused or abandoned sites across the city. Twenty-two urban design projects were selected in March 2016, including an electrical substation to be turned into a movie theater, a bathhouse to be transformed into collective housing, a building hosting city services offices to become an indoor market with a rooftop garden, etc.
Here is an update on three of these projects, which are likely to bring added value to the neighborhoods where they are located.
The Morland Building, 17 boulevard Morland, 75004 Paris.
Located between the trendy Place de la Bastille and the very chic Île Saint-Louis, this former administrative building is to become “a city within the city”: with strong partners such as Bouygues, the Emerige Group, and David Chipperfield Architects, this “environmentally intelligent” project is expected to be delivered in 2021. It will include all sorts of gardens, a swimming pool and a fitness center, apartments, offices, shops, a food market, an art center, a daycare center, a youth hostel, and a So hotel and restaurant by Sofitel.
Voltaire Electrical Substation, 14 avenue Parmentier, 75011 Paris.
After much delay caused by a neighborhood association opposing the project as it was first presented, this 1908 electrical substation is now scheduled to open around 2020/2021 as a movie theater. It will be topped with offices for the movie industry and a restaurant created by Michelin-starred chef Thierry Marx for the graduates of his cooking school. The rooftop garden and huge lobby will be open to all. Architect: Olivier Palatre.
Hôtel de la Bûcherie, 15 rue de la Bûcherie, 75005 Paris.
Built in the XVth century to host the medical school of Paris and last used as the “Maison de l’Europe”, this magnificent mansion is ideally located between Notre-Dame and Saint-Germain. La Compagnie de Phalsbourg‘s project was selected by the city of Paris to rethink the place: associated with architects Perrot & Richard, and designer Ramy Fischler, they will be opening (soon) a welcoming space fully dedicated to philanthropy. And again, chef Marx’s students will manage the restaurant, to be located on the top floor. A café is to open at the garden level. Solidarity, culture, and creation will be key values in this overall project.
[To be continued. Please stay tuned for Reinventing Paris – Part II.]