Published on Nov 18, 2023 at 11:00 a.m.Updated Nov. 18, 2023 at 11:01 a.m.
It was one of the flagship achievements of the first “Regional Express Metro” project, the ancestor of the RER, given to the Compagnie du Métropolitain de Paris at the end of the 1920s. The former My-Palaiseau railway station, in Essonne, disused since 2011, will get a second wind thanks to a third-place project.
The lease must still be signed but the very likely future occupant, the collective of residents “Quartier de la Gare”, dreams of opening the doors in 2025. Behind it, we would find a restaurant, a bar, relaxation areas , coworking, another for children, or even a vintage store, a music or audiovisual studio in the bat, and perhaps even a “FabLab” with a wood workshop.
Preserve the DNA of the place
But the building will first have to undergo a major renovation. Some 750 square meters need to be rethought to make the place vibrate again. The collective, which was chosen last year by the elected officials of the city of My, the real estate department of the RATP – owner of the premises – and the semi-public developer of the city, PariSudam, will have to take care of the interior layout and equipment.
“We estimated the cost at 800,000 euros,” indicates one of the founders of the collective, Valentine Baleato, who argues that Quartier de la Gare has already obtained a subsidy of 110,000 euros from the region. Funding is being sought from the public but also from the private sector, with the opening of an endowment fund.
For its part, PariSudam, which is in the process of signing an occupancy agreement for 50 years, will be responsible for financing the rehabilitation work, namely the structural work, insulation, etc. for an amount estimated between 1 and 1.5 million euros. “We will receive rent from Quartier de la Gare which will allow us to cover this investment that we are making,” explains PariSudam’s strategy director, Marie Krier.
The work, which “will preserve as much as possible the DNA of the place and its heritage quality”, ures Marie Krier, should start in the first quarter of 2024. In the meantime, the curious can do a virtual tour of what is still only an empty shell.
“Heritage of regional interest” label
Property of the RATP, the station was awarded the label this Friday “Heritage of regional interest” by the Ile-de-France Regional Council, like ten other sites in the region, like just over 200 sites in the Ile-de-France region. A way to recognize its importance in the local heritage network, and to raise awareness among Ile-de-France residents.
The distinction can be a real boost. Because this labeling allows project leaders to request two regional aids: one (capped at 500,000 euros) is used to finance the restoration and development work as an investment, the other (of 30,000 euros maximum) to promote and to discover the “small heritage of the Ile-de-France region”.
Completed in 1938, the former My-Palaiseau station came from the imagination of the architect of the Paris-Orléans railway, Louis Brachet. Its style “Monumental Art Deco also borrows from regionalism, in order to announce the arrival of the traveler “in the countryside””, traces the Ile-de-France Region in a document.
A rapidly changing neighborhood
With its traditional references, its mosaic and porcelain stoneware coverings, which mix with the industrial bricks of Rethel and concrete, the building is considered the most remarkable work of the Sceaux line, which became that of the RER B, which at the time departed from Luxembourg station in Paris and took travelers to the green.
“We must see this station not only as a particularly accomplished building in the Art Deco style, but also as witness to the ambition to symbolize a new style of life, that of the suburbs, at a time when we thought that the “architecture would solve social problems”, wrote the MyStoric ociation in 2016 in the first issue of his magazine.
For its part, the Ile-de-France region observes that “it today constitutes one of the rare historical landmarks” in the heart of a rapidly changing district of the city, whose appearance has already profoundly changed in twenty years. With this particularity of seeing residents, company employees (Carrefour has its head office there) and travelers cross paths. A public that the future third place, a stone’s throw from one of the most important transport hubs in Ile-de-France, where TGV, RERs, tram and soon line 18 of the Grand Paris Express intends to capture.