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La Chesnaie

Saint-Nazaire, France
1 of 13Architect's Web

The block of 3 rue des Ajoncs is a part of a highrise estate, La Chesnaie, characteristic of the urban planning of the 70s, based on the massive development of modern housing in the context of providing apartments for all and an optimistic vision of the future. It is currently being redeveloped by Lacaton & Vassal with the same approach used for Bois-Le-Prêtre Tower

Today the district has no more attractiveness and is depreciated, towards the inhabitants of the city. These situations, here as somewhere else, lead the authorities to demolish, to disintegrate, to drill, to spread, to recompose, to redraw the mass plans, without cares for the existing. Rather than just demolishing, instead look at the district attentively, objectively, from the inside, we see qualities and capacities there:. the inhabitants, the green spaces, the beautiful trees, the modernity, solid constructions, rather well preserved, the beautiful views far away in front of an urban situation close to the city center, well connected by transport, a good management of the buildings by the owner, closer of the inhabitants, in order to solve their problems, the conviviality, and often people rooted, attached to their district, but bothered by the bad image which sticks on it.

All this has a value, a sufficient value to consider that the existing situation has assets and precious qualities, which consequently support a radical and positive transformation. The transformation of the building 3 rue des Ajoncs takes this attitude as an action of longer term, it will re-qualify durable housing for the whole district.