In June 2015, Anne Hidalgo, Mayor of the City of Paris, announced the launch of the project "Réinventonsnos places" (reinvent our squares) through which she affirmed her commitment to ecology. Seven emblematic city squares were chosen to be redesigned and redeveloped, to give more space to pedestrians and non-vehicular transport. Her desire for a more appeased city points at vehicles as generators of anxiety and thus the project’s intent is to "Give more space to those who want to live in a more peaceful city, with fewer cars and less stress."
The collective Les MonumentalEs engaged with and undertook experiments in the squares of Madeleine and Panthéon.
Les MonumentalEs assembles architects, landscape architects, sociologists, ethnologists, urban planners, sustainable development consultants, gender and equality specialists, social insertion consultants and graphic designers. Its approach is transversal : historical, economic, cultural, ecological and social.
It is composed of : Emma Blanc Landscape Architect (projectmanager), CollectifEtc, Genre et Ville, Albert & Co, and Emmanuelle Guyard.
Designing a scheme in this highly symbolic, patrimonial context with political opposition is without a doubt the first challenge we faced.
The resistance, from some, to metamorphose the square has however not impeded our action, convinced as we are of the legitimacy in reclaiming the public space for the benefit of pedestrians. Close to an artistic performance, this project has opened up a field of reflection on space, towards a finer and more sensitive notion of art in cities.
In line with voluntary frugal interventions and materials, this process has sprouted other possibilities for design conception other than those of the composition, history, the traces ... to express a poetic dimension. The very ambiguity of this project built on the Place du Panthéon gives it its richness. The power of the raw materials, combined with the simplicity of the repetitive device of a grid confirms the status of an installation whose temporality and permanence remain to be defined. Replacing cars, this new powerful public space, economically efficient and rich in its diversity of uses is returned to the inhabitants, students, passersby and tourists of all genders.
Program : Co-conception, co-construction mission for the development of the Place du Panthéon.
· Recreate links between the Panthéon and the edges of the square.
· Make the square more welcoming and lively.
· Give more space to pedestrians.
· Provide new services in the public space.
· Improve co-use between different modes of transport.
· Rearrange the parking.
· Requalify spaces using vegetation.
· Reinforce accessibility for all users.
· Improve access for the neighbourhood.
· 1 prefiguration
· 1 launch event
· 1 feminist weekend
· 2 participatory workshops
· 2 public meetings
· 32 letters
· 1 350 participants in one of the 15 actions of the collective
· 40 pavement kerbs
· 8 created platforms
· 550 hours of social insertion work