The Ode to the Sea project is a physical application of the SCOT (territorial coherence programme) carried out with Bernard REICHEN over an area of about 1,000 Ha located to the south of Montpellier. It is an “Ecocity” project based on the deconstruction/reconstruction of an out-of-town shopping area consisting of one of the largest collections of
“s.hoe boxes” alongside a 4-lane road punctuated by large roundabouts.
This project is located in an area that is seriously vulnerable to flooding, and is based on an essentially water-based “nature project”. There is a very wide blue line drawn to show the new buildable area.
This water-based project which is based on very advanced technical studies shows how to build the city with a strong constraint that is expressed in terms of the project, not regulation. Living with the threat demonstrates that it is possible not to set the city and nature against each other but rather the constraints of one create the renewal conditions for the other.
This project leads to new urban forms built on a totally original ‘edge plan’. These new urban forms, of a city broken down into multiple dense and different hubs, allow another way of living with all the advantages of the city (being close to services and shops) and the countryside (recreation, feel on holiday at home, etc