End-of-studies Design Project Teaching Innovation / Technology / Experimental Layers / Grounds Productive city
Bowness-on-Solway, United Kingdom

Horizon + Energy

A polytechnic infrastructure in the Solway Firth (England & Scotland)
Pierre-Alexis RETY & Clément CHIVOT
Original language
University course
Double Master's Degree Program ENSAS-CAUP Tongji (Pierre-Alexis RETY), ENSAS Master's Program (Clément CHIVOT)

Crossing, retaining, passing through, sheltering... A "standard" bridge structure is often intended to be monofunctional. There is therefore an immediate clarity and legibility in the structure in its simplicity. This project tends to re-question the status, the scope of the infrastructure to anchor it in contemporary issues. By being at the same time dam, dike, viaduct, bridge, factory, the Solway Energy Gateway considers the proportions that can exist between the landscape (the natural) and the built (the artificial).

Starting from the country road, the project grows to reach a inhabitable infrastructural thickness in order to accommodate the necessary programs. At once a productive mission, an activation and a cultural awakening between England and Scotland, the Solway Energy Gateway seeks to federate around a major geopolitical issue: energy. 

Based on the energy producing core (the tidal plant), a programmatic strategy has been put in place to address the lack of socio-cultural facilities in this part of the UK. In this way, a University of Natural Sciences is being developed in direct contact with the plant. Three other programmatic couplings (private/public) allow to be part of this energy ecosystem. For example, the tidal plant feeds a Data Center (private program) which allows it to generate heat to feed a complex of baths and swimming pools (public program). 

Thus, this project expresses the necessity that there is today to find versatile infrastructural systems that allow a relocation of energy production, which is moreover renewable. This proposed response is a committed act that seeks to establish a state of balance between the specificity of a place, its wealth and the autonomy of a designed form. 

Keywords energy, gateway, multipurpose infrastructure, productive territory