All images courtesy of EMBT
To conclude a two-stage competition held by the Société Du Grand París, Miralles Tagliabue (EMBT) along with local architects Bordas+Peiro have won the commission to design the future ‘Clichy – Montfermeil’ Metro Station in Paris, France. To be complemented by a large public plaza, the project is distinguished by a colourful and geometrically dynamic canopy, which continues as the walls of a sunken atrium leading to the train platforms four stories below. The transit stop is part of an ambitious urban project aimed at improving the existing transport network and creating a new automatic metro, known as the ‘Grand Paris Express’.
Located at the border of two towns, Clichy-Sous-Bois and Montfermeil, the station and ground level plaza seek to revive a currently forgotten and underutilized suburban area. In fall of 2005, the neighborhood experienced violent riots that included the burning of cars and buildings. The addition of this public space and metro stop will act as a symbol for change as well as link the area to the entirety of Paris.
To smoothly link with the surrounding urban area, the designed landscape and plaza gently slope downward to the station’s entry. Circulation to the four levels below is arranged around a central atrium, which is characterized by its colorful panelized walls and contains a network of irregularly organized escalators. The layout produces increased interaction between passers-by. ‘The access becomes a game, where the passengers can see each other but they don’t cross. The circulation has been brought into scene, and the passenger becomes the principal actor.’
Beyond solely serving the planned metro line, the station will also act as a hub for bus travel. Additionally, the public aspect of the project is enhanced with a mix of commercial program, as well added green spaces.
Led by Architect Benedetta Tagliabue, the design team describes its overall optimistic outlook:
‘The idea was to give a new identity to this place, with a glance to the origins of many of its inhabitants. We would like to transform this grey and abandoned place into a vivid and colourful square, which inspires joy and optimism. This is why we based the motives of the pavement, the shapes and the colours of the roof on the tissues, decorative motives and colours from Africa.’