Icade Tertial, CFA
    Local shops, restaurants and residential units
    4 700 sqm of commercial outlets and 3 300 sqm of residential units

In Brest, Place Saint-Louis is a site of memory where, in the wake of the complete destruction of the city in September 1944, a new church was erected, a church to which local people are deeply attached. We took part in the competition for the contract to redevelop the square and designed a project based on a miniature allegory of Finistère…

A vegetal carpet overlaps the square, which is entirely covered in blue Huelgoat granite, before coming to an end, interrupted, like a fringe, in the perspective of the rue de Lyon. Naturally inscribed in the urban plan established after the war by Jean-Baptiste Mathon, the square calls to mind a platform of moorland, supported by large white concrete trees – the surfaces of which are adorned like folded paper – surrounded by a sea of blue granite. Traversing the artificial moorland diagonally, from the rue Duquesne to the rue de Siam, is a timber decking pathway, a construct that calls to mind a natural route that people may have followed across the region’s heather-strewn plains. Restaurant terraces are laid out along the passage like pontoons across the vegetal carpet, providing a view of the Church of Saint-Louis. At the heart of the vegetal plateau, an “eye” provides access to the building’s lower level and leads on to the rue de Siam. From this “eye” two twirling glass sails emerge to protect the passage, creating a sort of covered street on two levels. Lastly, marrying the form of a theatre balcony oriented towards the church, two small, three-storey buildings, shorter than those bordering the frame, create, along with the built environment of the rue Algésiras, a new rue des Halles, on an equal footing with its environment. Entirely covered in varnished copper, placed like two polished jewels on a green pedestal, their large, jutting balconies are oriented towards the south-west.

Around the square, the pedestrian zones are treated as a “neutral terrain”. Alongside the church, there will be a planted terrace designed in the same spirit as the currently existing one. Slightly raised, it will form a kind of bench oriented towards the higher square, providing a place of rest for passers-by. It will thus create a reciprocal visual relationship between the square and the Church of Saint-Louis.