Passages, espaces de transition pour la ville du 21ème siècle
À l’heure où la mobilité est au cœur des questions urbaines, on attend de chacun de nous une compétence accrue de navigateurs connectés, passant d’un mode de transport à un autre, parcourant des distances quotidiennes variées, dans des aires métropolitaines fragmentées par les réseaux, les infrastructures rapides, les zones spécialisées.
Les passages, petits espaces de transition, sont des maillons essentiels d’une mobilité durable, indispensables à la qualité de nos déplacements quotidiens et dans la conception d'un système de mobilité intégré. Tunnels, passerelles, escalators, téléphériques urbains,...
At a time when mobility has moved to the heart of urban priorities, each of us is expected to demonstrate our skills as online navigators, shifting from one mode of transportation to another, covering various distances on a day-to-day basis, in metropolitan areas that are fragmented by large networks, fast infrastructures, specialized zones.
Our day-to-day experience is made up of journeys—slow and fast—on foot, in mass transit, in motor vehicles, by bicycle, to access the resources that urban life offers, whether close by or across the city.
They impose changes, breaks, obstacles to be negotiated, often a choice between discomfort or not traveling at all.
Our bodies, basic units of mobility, are subjected to stress, fatigue, anxiety. Passages, as small transitional spaces, are essential links in a mobility that is sustainable.
Tunnels, footbridges, escalators, urban funiculars, corridors that facilitate transition between modes, between urban ambiences...
History and the observation of how they are used show us that they are potentially a source of particular kinds of urban character, of ambiences, activities, qualities.
The word “Passage”, in its semantic diversity (philosophical, temporal, spatial, musical, literary), reflects this clearly.
However, these spaces of accessibility are often neglected in the production of our cities, though they require little investment, and should be a natural part of any big development operation—in particular new transportation projects— possessing the capacity to repair the fractures introduced by rapid transit infrastructures and 20th-century zoning practices.
Locally, passages can be designed and built without the need for long delays, laying the foundations for more large-scale transformations: “The small-scale that changes everything, or almost everything.” International action-research program (2014-2018) developed in several cities around the world (Tours / Saint Pierre-des-Corps, Shanghai, Toronto, Barcelona, ​​São Paulo, Valparaiso, Buenos Aires, Montevideo, Santiago de Chile, Bogota, Nantes , Volos, San José, Grenada, Algiers, Cotonou, Maputo, Tunis) aiming at putting forward the issue of passages by launching concrete work on territories:
  • Professional architectural and urban planning competitions for the elaboration of passages projects in 11 cities (Tours / Saint-Pierre-des-Corps, Shanghai, 6 municipalities of the Metropolitan Area of ​​Barcelona, ​​Sant Adria del Besos, Toronto, São Paulo), which mobilized 270 multidisciplinary professional teams, representing approximately 1000 professionals of 40 nationalities
  •  Student workshops with partner universities, and on-site workshops with the teams selected during phase 2 of the competitions
  •  The Passage Manifesto, a call to innovation and a guide to promote the design of future mobility spaces, co-signed by the scientific committee, the project partners and the visitors of the international exhibition