EURALILLE, FRANCE, LILLE, 1994
|A masterplan of an entirely new city – a program of one million square meters – in the complicated urban condition of Lille.|
By OMA © All rights reserved
In 1989 Euralille, a public-private partnership, commissioned OMA
to masterplan a vast program consisting of more than 800,000 square
meters of urban activities - a new TGV station, shopping, offices,
parking, hotels, housing, a concert hall, congress - built on 120
hectares on the site of the former city fortifications by
Paradoxically, at the end of the 20th century, the frank admission of the Promethean ambition - for example, to change the destiny of an entire city - is taboo.
This project is based on the hypothesis that the 'experience' of Europe will change beyond recognition through the combined impact of the tunnel that links Britain and the Europe, and the extension of the French TGV network to include London.
If this hypothesis turns out to be true, the city of Lille - dormant centre of gravity of a conceptual triangle of London / Brussels / Paris, which contains more than fifty million inhabitants - will magically acquire a theoretical importance as the receptacle of a wide range of uniquely 'contemporary' activities.
In this fin-de-siècle, 'programs' have become abstract in the sense that they are no longer connected to a place or a city; they float and gravitate opportunistically to that site which offers the highest number and quality of connection - which seems nearest to all other places.
In Lille, the new TGV line is projected on the location of the former fortifications now occupied by a proliferating periphérique. A gigantic futuristic project is imagined two steps from the historical centre, a hybrid condition - history and modernity - that allows the injection of peripheral activities near the heart of the city.
All these elements define a new urban condition which is at the same time local and global, as important for the 'Japanese' as it is for the 'Lillois'.
Centre of Lille, 700,000m2 for phase one, 1,200,000m2 for phase two
TGV station, offices (45,000m2), shops (31,000m2), park (100,000m2), 700 apartments, 3 hotels: 4,3,2 stars, 6,000 parking places, Exposition (20,000m2), Congress (18,000m2) with amphitheaters of 1,500, 500 and 300 seats, rockhall 'Zenith': 5,500 seats and parking for 1,230
5.2 billion French Francs (3.6 private, 1.6 public)
1992 Antonio Gaudi Prize, Olympic Awards, Lille Urbanism Project
Rem Koolhaas, Donald van Dansik, Floris Alkemade