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Eco-districts and innovative housing

In the face of growing ecological awareness that has raised many questions about the nature of the built environment, the last few years the sustainable development has taken on a special place in the world of construction. More and more projects are experimenting with the integration of sustainability practices into the design process. It is in this dynamic that the notion of sustainable neighbourhoods or eco-neighbourhoods is born.


Density, a necessary condition for moving towards sustainability

The practices of the late 20th century promoting urban sprawl are in contradiction with the principles of sustainability. The resulting sprawl obviously has a negative environmental impact, but it also generates social inequalities and increases collective costs. The spatial segregation of functions leads to dependence on infrastructure networks. Eco-districts are the opposite of these urban sprawl practices.  They are often built on urban or industrial wastelands so as not to encroach on green areas or agricultural land.


Quality of life at the heart of the projects 

While density is a necessary condition for a sustainable future, it is not a sufficient characteristic. Eco-districts have many other advantages. They incorporate the following principles

> Environmental responsibility: in order to achieve high environmental quality, generally defined by labels such as Minergie, eco-neighbourhoods set targets for reducing the ecological footprint and rational use of resources in construction and operation. They also encourage biodiversity.
> Proximity of services: eco-districts bring together all the functions and services necessary for city life in order to satisfy the inhabitants who appreciate having everything close by, thus returning to a village scale.
> Travel management: eco-neighbourhoods encourage soft mobility and the use of public transport.
> Development of social links: the creation of shared spaces is a key element in the design of sustainable neighbourhoods, which are oriented towards conviviality.

> Citizen participation: eco-neighbourhoods place consultation at the heart of the construction process. From the design stage onwards, they aim to include all key players. Once the project is completed, this approach encourages residents to become involved in the day-to-day management of the neighbourhood. 
> Social and generational diversity: to avoid turning eco-districts into closed green showcases, more and more urban planners are insisting on the need for people of different ages to live together.

Some exemples of eco-districts:

> La Jonction eco-district (Geneva)

Dreier Frenzel et BTB. 2020

> Les Vergers eco-district (Meyrin)

Bellmann Architectes. 2017

> Souberyn cooperative building (Geneva)

atba architecture. 2017

> Pra Roman eco-district (Chalet à Gobet)

Pont 12 architectes SA. 2020

> Plaines-du-loup  (Lausanne)

Tribu architecture SA. Under construction

> Eglantines eco-district (Morges)

Tribu architecture SA. Under construction

  • Duration: To be defined

  • Transport: Public transport and walking

  • Services: Experienced local architect as guide, coffee break reservation

  • Languages: French, English, German, Spanish, Italian, Portuguese

  • Group size:max. 25 pax

  • Price: To be defined

  • Not included: Consumption at café and transport costs

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