The major housing development projects

Lens, The transformation continues!

Lens, town centre of the 5th largest regional agglomeration, aims to take on the following challenges:

  • Improving retail appeal and extending the town centre
  • Linking up the different areas within the context of Lens's town planning history that emerged around the mining towns
  • Developing the local cultural heritage, particularly the remarkable mining heritage

Lens, a town that is on the move!

  • Major projects in keeping with the ANRU agreements: Grande Résidence, Montgré, Sellier and related sites
  • The high profile projects that are currently in progress and will be having a strong impact from 2012 onwards: railway station area, République, Apollo
  • The projects that are currently being prepared that will transform the whole town: the 12/14, Van Pelt, Nexans, Interface Montgré République, Place Salengro, etc.
  • The projects connected with the Louvre: the eco-towns, the Unesco certification of 5 sites, Euralens and the consistency between the projects aiming for an excellent standard with priority actions (Development of the railways, Bollaert-Gare route, Development of the East-West access of the Louvre, Master plan currently being put together…)

The urban redevelopment

The focus of the town's work is on the renovation of the different areas. In addition to the renovation of the Mining Towns, Lens is undertaking the urban renovation of three sectors: the Résidence Sellier, the Montgré Area and the Grande Résidence Area.

The urban renovation of the Montgré Area

Since spring 2004, Lens has undertaken the urban renovation of the Montgré Area.

This construction site aims to accomplish the following:

  • Open up the town and improve links between the different areas
  • Reorganize the area in a coherent manner
  • Develop the living surroundings for the population  Create ambitious architectural features that incorporate high quality environmental principles
  • Redevelop public spaces with an excellent standard of landscaping that is respectful of the environment
  • Vary housing products in order to encourage social diversity

The building of a geriatric unit for the Hospital of Lens in this area will have additional benefits on the redevelopment of this area.

The urban renovation of the Résidence Sellier

This project aims to accomplish the following:  

  • Encourage social diversity by updating and renovating the available housing
  • Introduce people to participative democracy by establishing a teaching method for monitoring and communicating.
  • Encouraging the urban integration of deteriorated areas and improving the living standards for the population.
  • Encouraging the population to appropriate the neighbourhood by marking out spaces and specifying their purpose as well as ensuring building security
  • Improving and developing public facilities and services

Regarding the HQE standard, the Town of Lens is encouraging operators to incorporate at least 7 out of the 14 HQE standard targets into Local Town Planning Guidelines

The major issues facing this renovation project:
Keeping costs under control for the population (affordable housing in terms of water and energy)
The reduction of direct and indirect impacts of the building on the environment
Optimizing the standard of the accommodation so that surroundings are pleasant to live in

As for the Town of Lens, it has incorporated HQE standards into the construction of the new municipal facilities in the area (schools, local hall...).

By 2012, this renovated area will be complemented by public neighbourhood facilities.

The urban renovation of the Grande Résidence Area

The project has focused on three major objectives:

  • Finding additional purposes for the area other than purely residential ones: modify the retail space, make use of appealing public facilities that are nearby (swimming pool, Hospital, school, 6th form colleges, secondary schools...) and develop activities other than those that already exist.
  • Opening up the area to the town: develop the zones in between the town centre and the surrounding housing estates, giving a priority to each route and creating "green" links and routes.
  • Improving the area's living standards: create public spaces, develop "residentialization" next to social housing estates, provide new accommodation offers (housing estates and other buildings to accommodate new people) and demolish the oldest buildings.

The project's first phase of operations was started in spring 2007 with the demolition of the first housing block: the Aymé Tower. Since then, the Cité des 40, the Fabre, About, Adler, Addison, Aicard and Adonis towers have also been destroyed.