The working partnership of the urbanism agencies
In 2009, the mayors and presidents of Greater Paris, Rouen and Le Havre got together to put in motion the development of the Seine Valley and the linking of Paris to the sea, which was the starting point for co-operation between six urbanism agencies comprising Paris (Apur), Caen (AUCAME), Seine Aval (downstream) Île-de-France (AUDAS), Rouen (AURBSE), Le Havre (AURH) and the Île-de-France (IAU). Convinced that this project was of national importance as it concerned subjects as vital as industrial renewal and the competitiveness of French ports, together they set up a partnership aiming to clarify policies around shared issues, carry out surveys and do some forward planning about the future of the Seine Valley and the Nomandy coastline.
Since then, the agency partnership has carried out a number of actions: assisting the local government authorities of Paris, Rouen and Le Havre concerning the content of the three “Seine Axe” conferences; publishing two documents summarizing and analysing the project; commissioning, financing and piloting several studies (“Seine Gateway” CRITT-APSLU, “Economic overview of the Seine valley” INSEE, “Competitiveness of the city ports, the Seine Axe case” OCDE), presenting the development issues of the territory at the LNPN (Ligne Nouvelle Paris Normandie) public debates, and recently, organising workshops on the “Seine Axe”, in preparation for the Paris conference, where they brought together nearly 200 participants, mostly elected representatives, port authorities and economists.
“Seine Axe, a shared vision”, the agency partnership's latest publication
On the occasion of the “Seine Axe” conference, which took place in Paris at the Hôtel de Ville on 22 November 2012, the partnership published “Seine Axe, a shared vision”, a document which sees itself as both a record of actions undertaken by various key players since 2009 and a look at the way ahead. It can be broken up into the following headings:
- Prologue signed by the 6 urban agency directors;
- Timeline of the project since 2009;
- Key costs of the Paris Seine Normandy area;
- Mapping of the territory and its projects. This atlas provides a view of the Paris Seine Normandy area and reveals the opportunities and leverage points, in particular the project dynamics coming out of the territories, which the whole project can take advantage of. Via the various different themes tackled, this work anticipates the possible ways in which a Seine Gateway project might unfold, and thus establishes a basis for the drafting of a strategic plan for the territory.
- Action of the Seine Axe workshops. In preparation for the Paris “Seine Axe”conference and at this stage of the project, it seemed necessary to the organising local authorities and to the urban agencies partnership, to bring together the initiatives being undertaken by the various key players and to think of the conference as a time to draw breath and have a debate after a year of large-scale work. The “Seine Axe” workshops, organised between June and September 2012 by the urbanism agencies had the double objective of initiating a dialogue and facilitating a cross-cultural exchange between all the key players, particularly the economists and the local authority representatives, and of allowing common visions and proposals to be presented and debated during the Paris conference;
- Summary of the main reports and studies 2009 – 2012. Since the International Consultation about Grand Pari(s) (the Great Gamble) and Antoine Grumbach’s Seine Metropolis project, a lot of key players have become involved in the Seine Valley development project. In particular, numerous reports and studies have enriched the project over the last four years. The different angles of approach, the diversity of problems dealt with, the multiplicity of contexts for study, all give evidence of the abundance of courses of action undertaken and provide proof of a project that is really up and running. The third section of this document aims to summarize the principal reports and studies published since 2009, with the objective of allowing everyone to have a vision of the work as a whole, of putting events into chronological order, and identifying the fundamental issues and the common ground of the project.