In Situ Architectes Paysagistes: In Lyon, Fort St Jean hangs above a rocky outcrop on the left bank of the Saône river. The project, which accommodates the new school of public treasury, asserts the site’s great quality with very simple principles : “Landscape buildings” slip into the fortifications repeating the vocabulary of terraces, walls and glacis. At the center of the fort, the Place d’Armes is a large mineral courtyard, paved with limestone, that federates all spaces. As a balcony over the city, the Mediterranean Garden opens this courtyard by framing views between a stratum of low evergreen shrubs and scented Mediterranean perennials.

The wall-walk, like a central thread, connects singular and contrasting gardens. It offers views of the horizon and bird’s eye views of the school’s various areas. In each of these areas, a unique relationship with the site and exposure to the sun allows for various atmospheres: undergrowth under the foliage of existing trees in the bastion garden, Judean pine trees, great monochrome sedums in the amphitheater, soap trees and wisteria shading the library’s garden terrace, and a flowery meadow with fig trees and hollyhocks under the stronger winds of the lower terrace.

Landscape Architecture: In Situ Architectes Paysagistes
Project: Fort Saint Jean
Location: Lyon, France
Realisation: 2005
Area: 1ha
Cost: 0,99M EUR
Text & photos: In Situ

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