Key to the success of the economic and scientific project, Paris-Saclay constitutes a major development operation being led the Development Authority and local authorities. (“Communauté Paris-Saclay” inter-municipal association, Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines inter-municipal association, Versailles-Grand Parc inter-municipal association).
It exploits recognized assets in the local region – proximity between towns and natural and agricultural spaces, an attractive residential offer, excellent amenities and quality of life and a vibrant historical heritage with the sites of Versailles and Port-Royal – to create an urban model for everyone: residents, researchers, employees, students and visitors.
Eleven focus areas for development:
- the southern fringe of the plateau between Saclay and Palaiseau where the two joint development zones are in the operational phase, with studies underway for the Corbeville zone.
- the Satory quarter in Versailles where the decision to create a joint development zone was taken by the Development Authority on June 27, 2014;
- in Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines: the railway corridor where the creation of a joint development zone was decided on October 17, 2014, covering the sector Boubas-Louise Michel, la Croix de Saint-Pierre, la Verrière, la Minière;
- Massy-La Bonde;
- INRA and HEC in Jouy-en-Josas
A multi-tier development approach
The development of Paris-Saclay is playing out on a number of levels. Firstly, its integration with the broader metropolitan system with links to Paris and to the development poles within the Paris region, for which the Grand Paris metro and Line 18 are decisive factors. Secondly, a more local spatial integration. The development is connected to existing towns, to their population, their facilities and amenities, and to their history. Key to this spatial integration is organizing how people move around, the housing, the academic and economic activities, the shops and the public facilities. Thirdly, organizing the spatial relationships within the development. Within each project, there is a structuring of exchanges, shared resources, neighborhood links. The idea is not juxtapose but to mix different functions. Public spaces, the development of public transport, bicycle paths and soft links all have a role to play in achieving this.
On the broader plateau scale, the spatial strategy is underpinned by the geographical structure and the features of the landscape – valleys and wooded hillsides, natural boundaries, thresholds, water networks, road infrastructure, public transport and “soft” forms of mobility – that are highlighted and amplified. Within this consolidated landscape structure, an urbanized and interconnected network of “on-campus-parks” will take shape in the main areas of development. These will serve to preserve the agricultural spaces and to host, in varying proportions, accommodation, businesses, shops and amenities.
Three framework documents define the development goals for the Paris-Saclay territory. Adopted unanimously by the Development Authority’s governing board in January 2012, the territorial development plan is the strategic document setting out the fundamentals for a balanced development of the territory. It outlines the orientations of the Paris-Saclay project in terms of housing, mobility, economy and quality of life. It serves as a reference for all projects undertaken by the Development Authority with its partners. The plan is detailed in two territorial development agreements: the territorial development agreement for southern Paris-Saclay and the territorial development agreement for Versailles Grand Parc/Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines/Vélizy-Villacoublay concluded between the French state and the local authorities. These establish “the objectives and priorities in terms of urban planning, housing, transport, movement, prevention of urban sprawl, commercial facilities, economic, sporting and cultural development, and the protection of natural, agricultural and forest spaces, landscapes and natural resources”.
A development strategy elaborated with landscape designers, town planners and architects
The Paris-Saclay Development Authority is collaborating under a framework agreement with the consortium led by landscape architect Michel Desvigne (winner of the “Grand Prix de l’Urbanisme” urban planning award in 2011), together with architects and urban planners Xaveer de Geyter and Floris Alkemade, and agencies AREP, SOGREAH, SETEC.
Opting for an internationally renowned landscape architect to head the project management consortium reflects the desire to make the landscape the cornerstone of the transformation of this extensive territory. The consortium defines the development strategy for the geographical scope of the Operation of National Interest as a whole. It is also chief planner for the École Polytechnique joint development zone.
A team led by the Saison-Menu agency together with the landscape architect Taktyk is working hand-in-hand with this first consortium to conduct urban studies for the Moulon district joint development zone.
This work is aligned with that of the OMA agency, itself charged with the design of the Joliot-Curie district.
The urban project management of the Versailles – Satory West district was awarded in November 2015 to the consortium made up of Pranlas-Descours / Agence Dalnoky Paysagistes / Egis Ingénierie, while engineering and management support to the contracting authority for sustainable development was awarded to the consortium of Franck Boutté / Biodiversita / Urban Water / Gamba / Aria / Roland Ribi. The two teams will work together on the design of the urban project in order to prepare the joint development zone submissions, and will then coordinate the implementation of the urban project.
An urban project management team will soon be selected for the Boubas-Louise Michel joint development zone in Trappes.