Ansières Residential Park by Espace Libre Paysage et urbanisme, Paris, France What is the common thing between urban fabric, college and high school? Nothing, perhaps. But that “nothing” seems to be the missing link which needs to establish the connection between those unrelated elements. As you can guess, the best way to create this bond is certainly landscape design, and the best color for filling that gap – green. This is exactly the case we’re going to explore: A square surrounded by different institutions in the French commune of Ansières-sur-Seine, which needed to be redeveloped. This is where the exceptional work of Espace Libre Paysage et urbanisme landscape firm flourished.Espace Libre To get to the heart of the Ansières Residential Park project, first we need to examine the ideology of Espace Libre (meaning free space in French). Espace Libre is a firm, engaged mainly in landscape architecture, urbanism and environment. The team of experts covers a wide range of work in varied areas of the landscape profession, including: urban redevelopment, infrastructure, business parks, parks and gardens, promenades, bicycle paths, playgrounds and sports fields.
Ansières Residential Park’s Mission: ‘Social Bond’
Besides the rich professional experience, there is one thing standing out among the other competencies of the company – the team is constantly striving for new standards and new technologies specific to the genius loci of each site. Espace Libre’s ultimate purpose is to create attractive, functional spaces with enhanced structural elements and reinforced social bond. To be able to fulfill their mission at Ansières Residential Park, the landscape architects had to create a successful, vibrant open space, which would transform the colorless square into a center of gravity for visitors.
The Project Design of Ansières Residential Park
The first step was to double the area of the existing park. This was important for both, the unification of the three adjacent buildings, and the best possible utilization of the space. To break the monotony of the relief, a half of the green area was raised by 0.5 meters. This raising on the other hand, felt more like a boundary between the two halves, so the landscaping team decided to fix this problem by “folding” the borderline.In this way, the link connecting the two entrances of the park forms a natural path and provides a fine visual breakthrough. Following the fold’s pattern, the whole design of the residential park repeats and alters that motif. New Playgrounds at Ansières Residential Park After altering the topography and morphology of the site, attention was paid to the distribution of the four new playgrounds. The childrens’ playgrounds are situated around the center plot of the square in order to differentiate the area from the rest of the park. The playgrounds are also attractive for their asymmetrical irregular shapes, corresponding to the overall character of the site. The fourth element, highlighting the square’s center is the sports ground, which provides an active recreation program for college students. Secondary Accent at Ansières Residential Park One more key element of the residential park is the second square plot located at one of the park’s entrances. It serves the college as a gateway to the park, as it directs the flow of users. Besides that function, the square marks a secondary accent, which enriches the design and gives just the right finish to the overall composition of the park. Ansières Residential Park Accented in Purple and Green in Vegetation In addition to the subtle character of the design, a monoculture of lavender (lavandula angustifolia) is planted along the edge of the higher level. Its basic function is to underline the link between the two entrances, while adding color, texture and fragrance to Ansières-sur-Seine. Related Articles:
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Trees are mostly used on the periphery of the site to encapsulate the inner space, with a few scattered among the central parts to cast shade where needed, and to form several vertical accents.Hardscape at Ansières Residential Park The last design component concerns the use of materials for the hardscape. The two materials used for the surfacing are square pavers and rectangular white granite paving stones. The natural look and the bright hues of the pavement bring a sense of neatness and refreshment to an exquisite view of the park. Elements Elegantly Blended at Ansières Residential Park Having explored in detail the design of Ansières Residential Park, the project can be defined as a functional solution, which blends modernism, subtlety with a fine reinterpretation of geometry in one beautiful park. One, which above all, aims to create a social bond between people through landscape architecture – the best way possible! Article by Velislava Valcheva Recommended Reading:
- 100 Landmarks of the World: A Journey to the Most Fascinating Landmarks Around the Globe by Parragon Books
- Public Art: Theory, Practice and Populism by Cher Krause Knight