| Martha Müller + Valeria Zamora Marco
| 2013 | Master Thesis | EPFL (Lausanne)
| Profesor: Dieter Dietz, Christian Gilot, Urs Egg. Expert: Stéphanie Bender
Facing The Lake. Four Registers on the Leman Nexus.
Theoretical Statement, autumn semester 2012
Lac Léman is a central element with different levels of importance. We define the central presence of the lake from different points of view, the so called four registers: the Pays (to imagine governance), the System (to interpret composition), the Universe (to understand society), and the Territory (to face land).
In total, 24 experts are recorded while talking about their very distinct sense of belonging to the Lac Léman’s territory. The transcriptions of these dialogues confirm the centrality of the lake for the Universe. The lake’s relations to the Pays, System and Territory are contextualized by literature study. A documentation with stills and snapshots taken during our tours around the lake extends the theoretical work.
Lac Léman emerges as an element of identity and becomes an important factor for integrating individuals, cultures and places. In this context, facing the lake becomes a passive activity where one’s intellectual relation to the lake is established. We study this visual approach and question what if a new active approach towards Lac Léman is applied.
Final Master Project, spring semester 2013
Lakeborn-e is the result of one year research on Lake Léman. In our research we question the actual level of Lake Léman, fixed at 372,5m by man after a treaty at the end of the XIX century between France and Switzerland.
We propose an experiment : “What would happen, if the lake level dropped?
What would happen to our cities, beaches and borders?”A decline of several meters of the current water level would cause a transformation of the entire region: the waterfront changes, cities grow and new connecting infrastructures develop. New frontiers open and old ones vanish.
The project structures a new land in the Pays lémanique. We propose a strategy called the “Inner Border” to activate this new land that has two hundred km in length and a total area of ten square kilometers of new public space. The accesss and the transitions between the former and the new lakeshore as well as the adaptation of the harbours and the mobility in the new border of the lake are the three main aspects of this strategy.
We propose two different toolkits : one for transitions between the ancient and the new lakeshore and a second one to readapt the harbours. The first one is a catalogue of sections classified by the use that they host and the topography of the site. We call them the « keyseries ». The second one is a serie of modular piers that can be combined to create the new harbours of Lac Léman. Harbours are crucial, as they adapt to the new waterfront. For that purpose, we propose New Harbor Typologies whose spatial organization and programs reactivate the inner border of the Pays Lémanique.
The new land along the lakeshore establishes a structural continuity for this region through the implementation of two complementary infrastructures: the Boat and a Shoreline Tram. The Shoreline Tram means to pass through the Inner Border where the Key Series give a rhythm to the ride. The boat means to cross or to wander around Lac Léman.