Reinvent Paris. - Ternes Villiers

City nature in three dimensions

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Philippe Larocque

Project Manager, Architect


Paris, France


5,000 m2


2016 — ongoing


BNP Paribas Real Estate

Partners & Collaborators

Jacques Ferrier Architectures and Chartier Dalix. Visualizations by Beauty and the Bit.

Urban life and city nature in three dimensions. This is the main concept of SLA’s winning project in the international mega competition Reinventer Paris.

SLA and the team won one of the competition’s most central projects, Ternes-Villiers, by creating a scalable model and strategy for how we can create social and green values and functionality when building – as long as the buildings perform nature. In this case, the ecosystem services of nature will be working from both the roofs, facades and urban spaces.

Simultaneously the project introduces a new type of connection between Paris and its suburbs.


In the project, SLA creates a distinctive, green urban space directly on top of the Boulevard Peripherique – the big ring road that circles the whole of Paris. The two new mixed-use buildings and the 2,000 m2 central urban space are both constructed on a 5,000 m2 urban deck that makes it possible to rethink Paris’ relationship with its suburbs. The urban space is public and acts as a new pedestrian-friendly connection across the Boulevard Peripherique.

Vision: A green filter machine With its multilayered landscape concept, the site acts as a green filter machine, cleaning the city.
Vision for the future Boulevard Peripherique The new green belt, lush and continuous, will act as a porous link between the neighborhoods and the inner city while ensuring much-needed functional and aesthetic values for all.
Project visualization: Lush on top Directly above Boulevard Peripherique, you'll find a new pedestrian-friendly green realm

The project combines city nature-based ecosystem services with fully climate-adapted urban spaces and new social meeting places. At the lowest level you will find underground parking, above it pedestrian-friendly paths and, at the top, large roof terraces – which among other thing will house a tea plantation and a tea café.

SLA is also responsible for the green facades, the green roofs and the balcony gardens for the residential units.

Using 'the canyon effect' The project is characterized by its main green alley. By creating a geometrical 'canyon', we isolate smaller volumes of air while increasing the total surface area that can catch polluting particles.
Air depollution As many surfaces as possible are activated. The planted facades can for example catch up to 40 % of NO2 and 60 % of PM10 in the air.

In total, there are more than 200 different species of trees and plants in the project, all native to the Paris region. Besides creating varied aesthetic experiences and improving the microclimate, SLA’s planting design is composed to strengthen the biodiversity of the area and to create the right ecosystem services. Some of the important criteria here are how well the species perform in relation to absorbing rainwater and cleaning the air from pollutants.

In this way, SLA works with city nature and urban life as complete ecosystems and creates brand new urban experiences in an otherwise grey and traffic-congested part of Paris.




Planted facades All facades are covered by climbing plants and rennials that can catch polluting particles