Designed by Agence Nicolas Michelin & Associés, the Grand Large District in Dunkirk, France is a sustainable development that marks the beginning of the second phase of the Neptune Project. Launched in 1991, this project's central goal is to assimilate the city back into the seaside docks, creating a variety of buildings and public spaces. The project incorporates a range of sustainable building strategies including rainwater collection and renewable energy while addressing the economic and social needs of the community.
The 216 dwellings that make up the first phase of the development are strategically placed to create a community that is economically, socially, and environmentally responsible; the area will eventually be developed to contain 800 to 1000 homes. The district takes advantage of rainwater collection systems, and all of the buildings are designed to be highly energy-efficient.
Motor traffic is only allowed on access roads, giving pedestrians priority. The community encompasses a wide range of building types and public spaces—it includes a semicircular park lined with individual homes, a wharf with gabled structures, green terraces and U-shaped gardens in the center of individual lots. The buildings are set alongside social areas, setting the stage for a lively neighborhood for all to enjoy.