The Ria de Pornic is a coastal valley formed by the ocean and in which the sea entered many centuries ago. Today, it presents a marshy landscape with a thin water course running through it: the Haute Perche canal. After a 20th century that neglected its advantages, the ria is back in favour. The town of Pornic chose to reclaim the site to make a grand entrance to the city and restore the valley’s vocation as a place for human passage and settlement.
The small, undeveloped ria valley, which the port and the medieval old town dominated by its castle look on to, is also a space of rupture, dividing the town of Pornic into two: the blue road (2 X 2 lanes) and the railway track accentuate the cut made by the indentation of the coast. By redeveloping the wasteland around the ria, the challenge for the city is both to connect Pornic’s two hills, its two entities, and to establish a centre for the life of the town that reflects the history of this port city, turned both to the sea and inland, and to decongest the centre by creating transport arteries, while developing the city’s tourist facilities.
Our study is based on sustainable development. We propose to redeploy the urban fabric along a north/south axis and to regenerate a landscape going from sea to land thanks to the history of the plants and their derivatives that have all at times passed through these places.
This study fits into an overall scheme to provide a programme of housing, shops, leisure and tourism amenities for residents and visitors organised around a 14-hectare park. As a new urban area, the ria complements the existing facilities of the historic site and extends walking space along the waterfront.