Paris, 8 December 2022 – The business chair in Upcycling Urban Soil or Valorisation des terres urbaines, which is run by the City of Paris School of Engineering or École des Ingénieurs de la Ville de Paris together with ECT, published in Éditions Eyrolles the book « Urban Soil, an Asset for the City of Tomorrow » or « Terres Urbaines, valeurs positives de la ville de demain », under the direction of Youssef Diab.
The ecological transition leads to a re-examination of the practices and development approaches of urban management, which are notable for excessive consumption of resources of all forms – materials, energy, water, land, etc – and a lack of recycling. The question of excavated soil and its use is a crucial one, yet its place in the system is too often overlooked. This indeed is the subject of the business chair « Upcycling Urban Soil » which is at the centre of the ecosystem of studies concerning urban soil through biennial conferences, meetings and the publication of this new work.
Questions relating to soils, their management and upcycling are a subject of major importance in terms of their potential contribution to a sustainable regional policy of « circular economics ». The spatial scale of management, methods of upcycling and the symbolic aspects of upcycling directly involve urban engineering and the development of the region.
« To transcend town planning based on a master plan, it’s vital to change the conceptual frameworks, and the methods of production and management, of the urban environment. It is no longer a question of separating them by phase or by organisation concerned, but of aiming for approaches that integrate those concerned with the issues and, above all, the phases of life of the works and thus of the projects. The integrated management of soil with other urban issues is the subject of this book. »
Youssef DIAB and Antoine GRUMBACH
This work positions urban soil as a vector of the urban dynamic and its sustainability. Substantial and diverse upcycling of soil emerges from the outset as a major contributing factor in this sustainability. The book explores these aspects, divided into four major current themes:
« Urban Soil, an Asset for the City of Tomorrow » is the result of a multidisciplinary process. The authors are town planners, engineers, landscape designers and architects. In line with the conference that took place in 2021, this book brings together an ecosystem of specialists. And, through the example of structuring urban projects, enables the reader to discover new practices that are relevant to the management of soil in France and Belgium, but also in an international metropolis such as Cairo.
The authors : Michel Audouy, Alain Bourdin, Christophe Bouleau, Magali Castex, Ronald Charvet, Bernard Chevassus-au-Louis, Silvia Devescovi, Youssef Diab, Mathieu Fernandez, Nicolas Gilsoul, Jérôme Gleizes, Antoine Grumbach, Franck Jung, Marc Kaszynski, Laurent Mogno, François Ménard, Jacqueline Osty, Loïc Pianfetti, Élisabeth Rémy, Nadya Rouizem Labied, Reda Semlali
This new symposium from the EIVP and ECT business chair "Upcycling Urban Soil" took place in partnership with the ENSP, and with the participation of Cycle Terre.
After a first symposium in April 2019 on "Earth in all its States", which analysed urban soil as a resource and material with many aspects, ECT and the EIVP take a deeper look and put soil at the heart of current debates on the sustainable city. Social, environmental and economic perspectives are at the centre of the examination that EIVP is undertaking in the context of their teaching and research chair.
Soil is an under-appreciated resource, and we believe it has a positive value in material / physical terms, in environmental and economic terms, and also symbolically and socially.
Every year in the Paris region nearly 10 million cubic metres of inert soil, the equivalent of four Great Pyramids of Giza, are produced by public and private works. It's a quantity that represents a significant issue for sustainability in urban and near-urban regions.
The conference "Urban Soil: An asset for the city of tomorrow" proposes treating this resource as a vector for the rehabilitation of derelict sites, as a defining element for new landscape in the regions, as a construction material that is respectful towards the environment, and as an essential element in the urban integration of green spaces of varying kinds and of biodiversity.
These 4 focal points demonstrate how urban soil provides a practical representation of a new and positive approach to their inclusion into policy-making for the sustainable city, as with energy; combining economy of resources and re-use of materials in a way that is respectful of the environment.
A great variety of examples and approaches both theoretical and historical will be explored during these four half-day sessions. International examples, debates, and analyses in both national and Île-de-France contexts will be discussed. The role of a new urban engineering will also be examined as a factor in a better consideration of inert soil in the sustainable city.
The programme for the symposium was prepared by a committee including Y. Diab, S. Alix, A. Grumbach, R. Semlali, V. Piveteau, B.Julien-Labruyère, S. Devescovi and M. Castex
The entire symposium is available to see again
Part 1: Land, Soil and the Sustainable City (I)
Part 2: Making Landscape: A positive view of the role of excavated soil
Part 3: Earth as a Material: The Cycle Terre project (Action Urbaine Innovante)
Part 4: Land, Soil and the Sustainable City (II)
The symposium was followed up with a collective work revealing the thousand and one ways in which inert soil can be upcycled. A golden opportunity to shine a light on excavated soil, which is at the heart of initiatives that are often unsung. Shows that soil is a marvellous resource.
The EIVP (City of Paris School of Engineering), a leading university for urban engineering, and ECT, the French leader in the upcycling of excavated soil, organised the first conference on "La Terre dans tous ses États" or "Earth in all its States". This conference is one product of the ECT business chair at the EIVP.
EARTH IN ALL ITS STATES ("LA TERRE DANS TOUS SES ÉTATS")
9 and 10 April 2019
at the EIVP, 80 rue Rébeval
Conferences and round tables: Researchers, developers, elected representatives, experts
Visit: ECT's site for management of excavated soil at Moissy-Cramayel (Seine-et-Marne, 77)
This work, arising from the conference "Earth in all its States", reveals the thousand and one ways in which inert soil can be upcycled. It's a golden opportunity to shine a light on the principles of 'circular economy' and ecological mitigation that are at the heart of these often unsung activities.
Soil is a marvellous resource!
A wide variety of solutions will be explored, ranging from remediation of polluted zones and backfilling of mines and quarries to the creation of planted parkland, the restoration of farmland, the transformation of soil into a construction material or topsoil, and the creation of works of art or works of urban engineering.
See the programme in detail