New park for LaM, Museum of Modern, Contemporary and Outsider Art | AWP

• September 8, 2010

Lille Métropole Communauté Urbaine has commissioned AWP to redesign the park for LaM, museum of modern, contemporary and outsider art of Lille Métropole, Villeneuve d’Ascq, France, opening its doors the 25th September 2010. AWP is an award winning Paris based practice for territorial reconfiguration (architecture, landscape design, master planning).

The Lille Métropole Museum of Modern Art was built a quarter of a century ago in a verdant surroundings by architect Roland Simounet. Manuelle Gautrand has now designed an extension to the existing building to host the outsider art collection. In accordance with the wishes of donors Geneviève and Jean Masurel, the museum has from the outset been designed as a harmonious union of works of art, architecture and a magnificent sculpture park (Alexandre Calder, Pablo Picasso, Eugène Dodeigne and others). With its two architectural units set in the sculpture park – which constantly attracts many visitors from all the Metropolitan Area, the LaM naturally encourages people to wander back and forth, indoors and outdoors, and allows the works of art to be viewed at eye level, thus fostering intimacy between visitors and exhibits.

The main structure and hardscapes of the new park are now completed, whilst softscape works are still ongoing. To fully appreciate the extent of the transformation, a further visit will take place in june 2011.

AWP LAM 1 New park for LaM, Museum of Modern, Contemporary and Outsider Art | AWP

New park for LaM, Museum of Modern, Contemporary and Outsider Art, image courtesy AWP


This project is based on a reflection on topography and its geometry: a complete redesign of the park through a series of angular terraces and slopes connecting the Museum to a newly designed water promenade. The design springs from the desire to clarify, liberate and enhance the legibility of outdoor spaces, strengthening their relation to architecture and sculptures. The landscape is built up through a series of views framing specific scenes and sculptures and through the articulation of different natures, to foreground the perception of a unique environment.

Roland Simounet’s legacy and vision are reinterpreted in a sensitive and contemporary perspective. The park is an extension of the buildings, a special place for temporary installations, ideas, objects and encounters.


The design focuses on four major interventions:
1. To create a threshold / piazza connecting Museum, Park and City;
2. To design an artificial topography: reinterpreting the existing landscape, framing views;
3. To discover a new relation to water through the design of a river promenade;
4. To propose three small gardens: nature – elsewhere monochromatic and neutral – is intensified where Simounet’s building meets the new extension.

AWP office for territorial reconfigurations
NAJA, French Ministry of Culture Award for best young Architects, 2006
Nominated for the Mies Van der Rohe prize, 2009

+ About AWP

Strong with a high track of award-winning projects AWP focuses on an innovative relationship between master planning, landscape architecture, and architecture. Their portfolio of clients includes several european cities, metropolitan and regeneration authorities, cultural institutions and developers. Among their works: the French Pavilion for the Architecture Biennale in Sao Paulo, Brazil (built 2007), the Lantern pavilion and public realm in Sandnes, Norway (built 2009) the enlargement of a water purification plant in Evry, France (on site, 2003-12) the 230ha strategic planning for the Praille Acacias Vernets sector, Geneva, Switzerland, (2009-ongoing), the public realm redesign for Capodichino airport, Naples, Italy (2009-ongoing).

+ Project credits / data

Project: New park for LaM, Museum of Modern, Contemporary and Outsider Art, Lille Métropole, Villeneuve d’Ascq, France
Location: Lam Museum, Villeneuve d’Ascq, Lille, France
Competition: 2006
Works on site start: March 2010
Delivery: September 2010
Surface: 42 000 m2 approx.
Budget: 1.180.359,00€ Vat excluded

Client: LMCU, Lille Métropole Communauté Urbaine + Association de Gestion du Musée de Lille Métropole
Architects: AWP, office for territorial reconfigurations | Marc Armengaud, Matthias Armengaud, Alessandra Cianchetta
Project director: Alessandra Cianchetta
Engineering: Ginger
Ligthing design: L’Observatoire 1
Contractors: SCREG, SNB, SPIE Batignolles Nord, INEO, TERENVI


Category: Landscape

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