Le Mesnil de Stains
by Merril Sinéus & Séverine Savigny

According to the architects, while other are ringing the alarm about the deteriorating living conditions of people living in slums, few people consider these precarious settlements as real living places.

Séverine Savigny and Merril Sinéus are the project architects. They respectively graduated from Ensa Paris Val de Seine (2005) and Ensa Nantes (2003).

In the town of Stains, near Paris, the NGO, Les Enfants du Canal offers an innovative option that has yet not been considered; the creation of a temporary living space on site, in the middle of the shared gardens where families are now settled.

Allowing the transition to formal social housing.

Merril Sinéus and Séverine Savigny conducted several programming and co-design workshops. A step-by-step construction allowed the plot to be gradually occupied, thus working for a greater social reception of the experience.

Leaving time for the collective project to be built at the same time as the space to receive it was constructed.

This project’s challenges were the integration into a garden site and their choice of “zero artificialisation” of the land, the need for a removable and reversible building, and the combination of social and dynamic work of construction.

The architectural combinations are the result of the search for minimal impact on the environment, adaptation to the scalability of uses and optimisation of assembly, disassembly and future reassembly.

The 4 types of dwellings can be recombined differently depending on their installation site.

Spaces attributable to one or other of the adjoining dwellings allow the surfaces to vary, according to the families who occupy them.

The wooden structure is based on unscrewable micropiles. The houses are made up of insulated prefabricated boxes.

(floors, walls, roofs)

They chose the use of bio-based materials. Bioclimatic studies have made it possible to adapt the dimensions of the exterior joinery. Rainwater is reused for the laundry room and toilets, as well as for watering the gardens.

The structure and energy circuits are left visible, as much to accentuate the "readability" of the architecture as to facilitate their installation and maintenance.

Water, electricity, reversible heat pump

Exclusive wood for the structure and interior fittings, apart from the plaster ceilings in the studios and the floors in the kitchens in linoleum on a layer of cork.

Author Merril Sinéus + Séverine Savigny
Location Stains (93), France
Year 2017-2020
Client ONG Les Enfants du Canal
Surface 968 sqm
Collaborators Territoires Landscape architects: Etienne Voiriot, Valentin Kottelat, Victorine Lalire (Environmental engineering) - Netallia: Nicolas Martinez, Philippe Guigon (Wood structure) - Racine BE: Cyril Macquaire (Construction site organization) - Exagone: Christian Mouard
Photography Nicolas Waltefaugle

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a project powered by Itinerant Office

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