Martinique : Volga beach

Contracting authority : Agence des 50 Pas Géométriques de la Martinique
BASE landscape designers + Urbis mandatory urban planners + Pile et Face architects + SAFEGE roads & utilities

Fort de France / Martinique

budget /  12,6M €

area / 30 ha

delivery / 2020

It is in 1958 that a handful of men and women invest the site of the present Volga. This territory was conquered and resisted to the topography, to the floods (repressed with pumps and dykes), and to the notices of expulsion.

Volga is a dense district, lacking sanitation and hardly accessible.The pedestrian streets, although more numerous, are cramped and labyrinthine. Its density and consequent congestion of the roads generates serious problems of accessibility, especially concerning public transport or emergency services (fire brigade, ambulance, etc.).

The project to restructure the neighborhood is built around a dialogue between a multidisciplinary team (urban planners, architects, landscapers, project managers, sociologists ...) and the inhabitants.

The restructuring of the neighborhood begins with the opening of the virile network and a resizing of the main roads to irrigate the interior of the neighborhood. The isolation of the islands' hearts is possible by the demolition of unhealthy housing or in zone of risks. New dwellings will be built and public spaces will be set up in the form of simple installations, open to artistic finishing and the multiple appropriations of the inhabitants.

A reflection on parking at the neighborhood scale will free the narrow streets of the parking lot and give back a place to the pedestrian.