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Contest seeks to regenerate sites along river Seine

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The French government has launched an international competition to regenerate a series of sites along the Seine

Open to architects, designers, urban planners and other experts, the Reinvent the Seine contest seeks short-term proposals for around 40 publicly owned sites along the world-famous river and its canals.

The project aims to boost connectivity between Paris, Rouen and Le Havre, and to establish new ways of living, working, trading and relaxing on the river.

According to the brief: ‘The Seine is the cradle of the area, at once a source of nourishment, a major transport route and a driver of urban, economic, and industrial development, as well as boasting world-renowned natural and architectural heritage.

‘Reinvent the Seine aims to encourage competition as a source of innovation in relation to the river and the river’s contribution to the region. The reclamation of the river must be nourished by diverse cultures and skills, both local and foreign, in order to promote new purposes and uses in synergy with the water.’

The 777km-long river stretches from the Langres plateau in north-east France to the English Channel at Le Havre, and has played a major role in French history, culture and commerce.

Today the river has been recognised as an important site for future innovation and development.

Fresh interest in the river’s potential was sparked by French architect Antoine Grumbach’s ‘Le Grand Paris’ regeneration project, launched eight years ago.

Competition sites include tunnels, quaysides, footbridges, riverside plazas and former industrial sites. Among the highlights are the 200m² Port de Montebello opposite Notre Dame on Paris’s left bank and the abandoned Océade water sports centre in Lacroix island, Rouen.

Proposals should incorporate the river, promote new connections without interfering with maritime transport, consider natural flooding and promote the identity of the Seine Valley area.

First round applications must include a description of the project team, a 10-page A4 document explaining the concept and a single A3 board featuring illustrations.

Up to four concepts will be shortlisted for each site and invited to participate in the competition’s final round where bids must be drawn up in French with all costs detailed in euros.

The winning teams for each site will be announced by their respective land-owners in spring next year.

The registration deadline is 3 October.

How to apply

Visit the competition website for more information

Contact details

Email: reinventer.laseine@paris.fr

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