We have two projects which will be finished. We are opening a hotel in Montpellier. In fact, it’s not a hotel, it’s a mixed-use project including two hotels, restaurants and 12 housings. It’s like a puzzle, very dense and sustainable project. We are sharing a lot of facilities for all the users in the same building. We’ve created a sort of huge outdoor lounge which is like a giant living room. It’s a facility which is dedicated to all the users in the same building. This living room has a sort of café and a restaurant which allows all the inhabitants to share this beautiful place. The opening will be in June.
In September or October, we will also deliver Edison Lite, project winner of the call for innovative projects “Reinventing Paris” for the site of Edison, Paris 13th, launched by the Municipality of Paris. Our goal was to think about the new ways of living and to build housings which really fits these new thinking. It’s a building of 21 housing “custom” that is to say co-designed with future buyers, we helped them to choose inside the building which place they will want, how many square meters they will need, etc. The building is zero loads and sold at fixed prices. 25% of living space is a shared living space, such as a big roof garden, a cellar workshop, an open shared kitchen, etc. A part of the rooftop will be dedicated to vegetables for them, as an urban agriculture, the gardens are on the top floor and have beautiful views.
As architects, I think that we are lucky because we are creative and I think nothing even artificial intelligence will replace our creativity and ability to innovate, to build unexpected buildings and to bring a lot of beauty in our cities… As really a creative field of works, we will never be totally replaced. I think we have to improve our creativity. We must always think about projects as opportunities to accompany the development and improvement of our societies. So, we have a big role and we have to take it very seriously. We have to help the cities to be more attractive, to be more humanist, to improve their beauty. We have to make them more and more sustainable, perhaps to help them being really low carbon and energy zero. I think the architects must take part in this very ambitious process. Our creativity is really the route. It’s more than necessary to be creative in such situations. Also, we have to keep speaking about beauty because of the density, size of the cities which are becoming bigger and bigger. We have to think about the notion of beauty because nobody speaks enough about that. Of course, it’s a subjective notion but we have to keep it in mind. It’s the role of the architect to keep thinking about the ways to improve the beauty of the cities in terms of architecture. This is also a very fundamental notion too.
Most parts of the time of 2018 was dedicated in our office to develop studies. We are preparing phases on the constructions for several projects. For example, in Australia we’ve quite finished developing the studies. We are in a good way to begin the phase on the construction at the end of the year. It’s a library and extension of the City Hall of Parramatta, in Greater Sydney.
After that, we’ve developed studies for refurbishing W Hotel in Paris to also begin the phase on the construction during 2019. It’s located in a prestigious Haussmann islet, in the heart of the 9th district of Paris. The point is to ensure the complete renovation of the current Hotel W 5*, through a restructuring of the existing, to double the capacity of the hotel by also restructuring the adjacent building. We chose to create a rooftop facing the Opera Garnier.