Eco-neighbourhoods: the last frustrated outline of the great history of Utopia?

Authors

  • Jean-Louis Violeau École Nationale Supérieure d'Architecture Nantes

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.4995/vlc.2018.10619

Keywords:

Utopia, eco-neighbourhoods, urban dispersion, degrowth, Lacaton & Vassal

Abstract

Utopia today draws a critical horizon rather than a promising future. Too often, this promise may have been a tool to plea for patience and justify the immediate sacrifices in the name of a nebulous future. For a long time the construction of the city was an integral part of a larger project to build a new society. But under the contemporary aegis of "sustainable development", the new sentence is yet to take an original form. In eco-neighbourhoods, the plot is still despotic, and it only re-emerges from its box under the spectre of heliotropism, under the aegis of thermal performance and of neighbourhood plans dictated by the housing orientation. As for the "smart city" -a discovery of the field of marketing-, it will always draw a smile in our faces. Whereas sustainable development emerged in the 2000s as a soft and unanimous slogan, degrowth took over in the 2010s, turning into a hard cleaving slogan. But how to envision the "project" within this horizon without adopting a regressive posture?

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Author Biography

Jean-Louis Violeau, École Nationale Supérieure d'Architecture Nantes

Jean-Louis Violeau est sociologue, docteur en urbanisme et aménagement et HDR. Ses travaux portent sur la question du logement et ses usages, ainsi que sur l´histoire récente du champ architectural et de l’univers des architectes. Professeur à l’ENSA Nantes, et à l’ENSBA de Paris-Malaquais jusqu’en 2016, il est chercheur au CRENAU du Laboratoire Ambiences Architecture Urbanités (UMR CNRS 1563)

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Published

2018-10-31

Issue

Section

Research articles