EcoCité Clermont Métropole | Saint-Jean, Clermont Ferrand 2011

Centred on a large landscaped meadow, this masterplan aims to create space for the cultural industries and business through reconfiguring and expanding upon several existing buildings in the university city of Clermont-Ferrand in France. This new plan also offers the chance to open up this area to neighbouring amenities, and even though the design looks to the meadow as a central civic space, it distinctively not inward-looking.

Two bands of buildings along the southern and eastern edges of the site house a new school, new small-scale shops and new housing. At ground level, service yards, storage and car parks are concealed beneath a raised landscape bank. Above those are residential blocks, with views across the central meadow to the dramatic vista beyond.

The crater-like landscaping of the public space creates a gently sloping amphitheatre setting for family activities and relaxation, with reference to the surrounding volcanic landscape of craters, cones and land forms created from lava-flow.