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‘Crossroads 2015. Human cities_challenging the city scale’ is a creative workshop organized by Cité du design for the Human Cities program during the Biennale Internationale Design Saint-Etienne 2015. Focused on the conversion of vacant shops and ground floor premises in the Jacquard district, it will bring together local skateholders, designers and international networks . It will be animated by the Carton Plein association, which occupies B.E.A.U. – the temporary urban action office  during the Biennial. Carton Plein leads an atypical study in connection with the planners of the city, partners of the EPASE project – Etablissement Public of Saint-Etienne – in order to imagine collectively different scenarios to initiate new dynamics in the neighbourhood. The aim of the workshop is to try to stimulate the emergence of new services, new ways of investing spaces and new ways of inhabiting and living in them. The keys to get a district moving and to bring life to its streets for cities and towns are in their human capital, creativity and design.

“Crossroads 2015” will show how design tools – such as prototyping, script and visualisation –  can help to invent new urbanistic tools where creativity is at the service of innovation in the territories. It will create also a dynamic network between the members of Human Cities and the UNESCO Creative Cities of Design network invited by Saint-Etienne, by a collaborative experimentation.

 “Crossroads 2015” is also the gathering moment of the 2 main international workshops of Biennale International Design Saint-Etienne : “Human Cities” and “All Champions-People Olympics”: 2 initiatives focused on collaborative experimentation to make an active, creative, vivid city.

The first action of C.H.O.S.E is to launch a call for initiatives for local actors in order to establish an experimental program in 2016 – 2017 (see calendar below)

The result of this call for initiatives was very rich: 4 local actors came forward and presented their initiatives.

  • Dynamic Boutic ! : investing vacant commercial spaces with local competences to test activities responding to social and economic issues in the Beaubrun district.
  • Mutability : actions  accompanying the renovation period of Crêt de Roc  district, favouring a changeable, adaptable and user-quality centred vision of urban project
  • IRD sensitive  Lab  : narrating the challenging scales, perceptions and movements of a city under transformation
  • Mynalab : documenting the process and fostering the capacity building of bottom-up processes of urban experimentations through the competences of Saint-Etienne and Lyon third places

Recent updates:

We have met these four groups of actors collectively and individually which was the opportunity for them to present themselves, their initiatives but also their visions and goals.

During those meetings we discussed the details of their initiatives and we debated and reflected upon ways to mix their know-hows and cross-disciplinary approaches to challenge the urban transformations in Saint-Etienne!

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Our next meeting is planned for the end of April and the goal is to see how exactly the experimentations will take place!