If the investigations on architecture of the second twentieth century are now about ten years old, this heritage remains largely less recognized by the edility and the public, hence the interest of the censuses and monographs proposed here. Logically, after the census phase, which delimited the corpus of ensembles and residencies in Marseilles in its extension, the aim was to reduce their contours in order to develop a greater understanding, formalized by the monograph sheets. By definition, they reflect only one object of the corpus, but all the monographs thus constitute a collection covering a series of similar objects allowing the construction of typologies, classifications and comparisons.
13.1529 - La Savine
Les Borels, northeast of the 15th arrondissement
Literature references: 20th century heritage, domestic architecture
X Edition directory number: 1529, p 46. 2005
Conception & writing T. Durousseau arch. 2007
designation: La Savine
boulevard de La Savine, chemin du Vallon des Tuves, quartier des Borels 13015
Lambert 3: latitude 3.03363; longitude 43.3678
Access: metro 2: Dromel - Bougainville
bus 30: Bougainville - La Savine
Owner: LOGIREM (Savings Bank Group), 111 boulevard National, 13003 Marseille 04 91 28 01 01
program: Project of 988 housing units, originally 1,391 low-income housing units, as part of the Operation Experimental Sector of 15,000 housing units, 1969 competition.
Contracting authority: LOGIREM.
Set of 27 buildings, originally 35.
dates, authors: Exempt from Building Permits. Delivery: 1973. Rehabilitation: 1985, 1987.
Jacques Carrot, Charles Delfante, architects.
Entreprise, J. L. Stribick (Saint-Etienne).
site: East of the La Mure massif, south-east of the Tuves valley and the Marseille canal. Altitude between 130.00 and 180.00 m. Steep and wooded slopes. Housing Area C on the Master Planning Plan 1949.
mass plane: Top layout, organization on a hexagonal double mesh, centered on a K tower. Spreading: R+10 Linear, R+13 K tower.
frame: Model constructions: floors, walls and facades entirely prefabricated. Demolition and transformation during the rehabilitation. Average general condition.
cf. records: 1363 to 1367 - Towers K - 1401 - The Flamingos - 1402 - The Iris
sources: AD: 2071 W 49 (15.213)
In spite of the decline in "all concrete" produced by May 68, the Ministry of Equipment and the Federation of Housing Organizations launched a major competition in 1969 between architects and firms for an experimental programme on the realization, within the framework of private contracts, 15,000 units in major cities such as Paris, Lille, Marseille, Lyon and Bordeaux. Minister Albin Chalandon will name the device "punch operation"! The goal was to increase productivity and reduce delays and costs in housing construction.
The winning team includes Jacques Carrot architect, urban planner Charles Delfante and Jean-Louis Stribick’s Stéphane company all very close to Eugène Claudius-Petit, mayor of Firminy.
In accordance with the competition, the project includes a prefabricated construction process as well as assemblies of linear (4-10 storey bars) or point elements (13 storey towers). The result of this construction game is a real model, the M. 400N.
The process, approved by the Centre Scientiﬁque et Technique du Bâtiment in 1962, is neither very new nor very efficient. Floors 0.14 m thick, load-bearing walls 0.15 to 0.18 m are associated with 0.25 m facades including 0.03 m of insulation, all assembled by keying. The panels weigh 4 to 5,000 kg, which is consistent with common hoists. Several ﬁnitions are proposed such as porcelain stoneware, glass paste, washed gravel or reconstituted stone. The entrances are marked by decorative panels with moulded motifs.
The authors will remain lucid about the challenge of the "Chalandon" operation, imposed by the ministry and therefore suffered by regions whose climates and mentalities differ. He concluded: "the architects of the design are quite aware that they have not been completely successful".
Marseille will collect more than 3,000 houses, 20% of the "punch" operation, delivered in 1971 for Tours K, 1972 for Flamingos and Iris in 1973 for La Savine.
The Marseilles mass planes are marked by three-branch assemblies that are not found anywhere else. This figure is pure form: in this arrangement, which presupposes a central circulation core, the central triangle remains incomplete. We’ll have to cover it! The contribution of local architects who had to adapt the model to the site is certainly decisive in the way linear elements are grouped.
While most of the Stribick programme is located in various sectors of ZUP No. 1, La Savine is located in the conﬁncs of the city on a shoulder of the La Mure massif, bypassed by the Marseille Canal, which further reinforces the end-of-the-world impression of the operation. Despite the massive siting effect, the buildings have ten floors, the mass plan organized in hexagonal alveoli around the 13 floors of a K tower, ﬁxe the idea of a city closed and removed from everything. Only concession to the surrounding geography: the small Savine that clings at the foot of the hill to the path of the Tuves valley.
The complex will remain poorly equipped, cruelly lacking in activity, poorly cared for by public services. The city will be classified among the social issues of the city.
Twenty years after the delivery, which saw the bankruptcy of the company Stribick, La Savine will be the subject of major demolitions: in 1993, 6 buildings (211 units), five others in 2002 (209 units), were destroyed. The mass plane is today only a series of fragmentary, poorly articulated figures. As for the rehabilitations, they seem to aim to change the image of the group, via the facade trimmings creating a veneer of decorative figures without concordance with the original model.
By its remote location, not landlocked, by its treatment in terms of representation, La Savine remains a testimony of the misunderstanding between the conditions of production and the spectacular updating of housing.
born in Lyon in 1926, architect DPLG and urban planner, is the author of a hundred urban planning plans and has carried out some major operations. He is present on the project of Bagnols-sur-Cèze in 1958 with G. Candilis, he will work with Le Corbusier on the operation of Firminy Vert under the leadership of E. Claudius-Petit. He is also the author of the map of the Part Dieu district in Lyon. He was president of the Société française des urbanistes, of the Institut d'urbanisme de Lyon and a member of the Royal Town Planning Institute and the Académie d'Architecture.
Jacques Carrot, architect DPLG.
© Thierry Durousseau, 2004-2005