BY: SHAWNTAE HARRIS
A bridge that once sprawled over top the Seine River is transforming into a romantic 19th-century green space, complete with gardens and restaurants. A flower garden will weave between the tables set up for a peaceful meal.
Stephane Malka, the french design studio, is debuting OxyGen later this year. A splash of modern design will give the garden a fresh feeling and the area a much needed update. La Défense is located in the Paris business district, which is one of the largest business districts in France with a growing population.
The competition winning design will be prefabricated off-site and then assembled on-site to cut down on pollution and construction. Inspired by Paris’ Tivoli gardens, which served as an amusement park during the 19th century.
The greenery will be located between the train tracks and the bank of Neuilly sur Seine.
The elevated semi-circle design will feature bushes and grasses within the 1,500 square metre oasis. This way, the greenery will float and be visible from every angle and will not get swallowed in with the big business buildings.
“Thus, La Defense bow is transformed, and opens a ‘camouflage’ park,” write the architects. “A blend between Architecture and Landscape, with an inhabited bridge opened on the Seine: a new playground for both La Defense and Paris.”
The architects have thought about everything. They have paved various spots to make walking trails through the garden, mimicking the 19th century styled garden. The sculptures in the garden will add flare.
The terrace will feature both open and closed sections that lead to the restaurants. Businesses will also be on site.
The Stephane Malka design is known for creating elaborate green spaces on modern buildings. Later this year the company will create Plug-In City, providing a much-needed makeover to a 1970s apartment building near the Siene River. Instead of building the structure upwards however, the structure will be built outwards. The result will be an extension of the current dwellings, as well as hanging gardens, bow windows and balconies of various shapes and sizes.
The design studio has also recently opened up a new studio in Mugu Point, California, where they have created the Mugu House. The stone like design is made from sand and other low carbon materials for a more eco-friendly footprint.
“The architecture of the Mugu House links both nature and history, sustainability and territory,” write the architects. “The house revisits the original shelter’s myth with a vernacular dialogue with the mountain, and embodies a return to the roots of the American Continent.”
Stephane Malka, and the various projects that have been created are a a perfect example of how architecture and nature don’t have to be on opposing teams. Rather, they can come together to create stunning green spaces for city residents to utilize and enjoy.