Norman Foster + Partners recently revealed the masterplan for a new sustainable community just outside of Paris complete with twin faceted skyscrapers that will be the tallest mixed-use towers in Western Europe. Dubbed Hermitage Plaza, the high-density development will create a a thriving community east of La Défense that is targeting a BREEAM ‘excellent’ rating – one of the world’s most widely used environmental assessment methods for architecture.
Running alongside the Seine, Hermitage Plaza “will create a 24-hour community that will regenerate the riverfront and inject new life into a predominantly commercial part of the city.” The development will feature a hotel, spa, apartments, offices, and retail space in addition to a public piazza that runs all the way to the river’s edge. The twin triangle-faceted towers face each other at the ground level and twist as they rise to give stunning views of the city of light. Each tower features a high-performance glazed façade split into faceted panels that promote shading, and exterior vents can be opened for natural ventilation.
Paris has a history of vigorously fighting to preserve its skyline, so it will be interesting to see how the public receives this project. Hermitage Plaza is slated to break ground in 2010 and complete by the end of 2014.