Chartres Business Park Masterplan
The project for a 450-acre extension of the city of Chartres, France, with an office park, indoor leisure facilities, sports fields, and a housing complex proposes a new type of relationship between work and leisure, based on intersection and superimposition rather than on segregation. We tried to develop such a strategy for a site facing the city and its cathedral, located on agricultural land (the Beauce) along a national highway. more
We first established a strong link with the city through an “attractive” element: the long-cours, a vector leading from the center of Chartres and the cathedral. The long-cours gathers together leisure facilities, a clubhouse, meeting halls, shops, and so forth, in curved halls. Each construction is partially suspended and acts as a shelter for diverse public events. The long-cours can accommodate other facilities such as an open-air cinema, a swimming pool, and tennis courts. It extends west over the highway (acting as a bridge to Chartres) and east toward the countryside.
We then proposed a second vector, parallel to the highway and gridded to accommodate numerous plots of land, each defined by lines of trees extending into the countryside. Inside these plots light factories and office buildings can be built freely. Office spaces are also located in straight halls (ship-like buildings scattered across the countryside). The rectangular grid also divides cars from heavy industrial vehicles. Neon signs are proposed.
Finally, perpendicular to the gridded office vector, we planted long parallel rows of trees that articulate a new landscape. Between these lines we placed sports facilities and playgrounds as well as various entertainment centers. The whole scheme is conceived as a strategy, a game, so that concept and realization, function and finance interact in such a way that the complex programmatic mechanisms coincide with the conceptual clarity of the built image. back
Competition 1st Prize, 1991
City of Chartres
Lead Designer: Bernard Tschumi. Key Personnel: Karen Dogny, Therese Erngaard, Francois Gillet, Mark Haukos, Tom Kowalski, Robert Young, Véronique Descharrières back