Euralens chaîne des parcs de l'Artois

Lens-Liévin, Hénin-Carvin et Béthune-Bruay, France

Euralens chaîne des parcs de l'Artois

Lens-Liévin, Hénin-Carvin et Béthune-Bruay, France


In Lens, in Liévin, in Loos-en-Gohelle, we have helped bring about a reversal in perception: what once was considered the outdated, the abandoned, has become the face and place of recovery. In giving the status of landscape to the old routes of the mine, we have also brought about a change in the status of these cities, and of neighborhoods in the making. The elected representatives spoke of a “green archipelago”, and this shared image of the future seems to have brought about a change in how the inhabitants now perceive their territory.

The same paradox exists at the level of the mining district. These are already no longer slag heaps but parks in the making, so much is plant life present, whether appearing spontaneously or having been purposefully cultivated. Together, these parks could form an extraordinary chain. What was true for the Euralens Centralité project is true here, but on a different scale: an entire territory punctuated by vast parks, with easy connections between them. How not to think of the large park systems which created the exemplary structure for the urban territories of Boston, Chicago, or Washington? What an extraordinary irony of history that the remains of the mine today provide the opportunity of reshaping the landscape into a composition worthy of triumphant industry.

However, in order for this metamorphosis to come into effect and become tangible, an extensive work of reshaping is required, with particular attention given to maintaining restraint, guiding the design of an elementary composition.

The Strategic Plan of the Chaîne des parcs and its Charter are tools for project developers. They respond to a certain number of concrete concerns and development issues: how can we ensure that all these parks are consistent in terms of landscape, environment, ecology and programming? How can they be made attractive, legible and physically connected? What new uses should be given to them so that this chain of parks becomes a factor of economic and tourist development for the territory?

In 2018 the strategic plan is updated to include new territories to the west of the Artois Metropolitan. The number of parks has been increased from 7 to 11 parks, with a total surface area of 4,200 ha linked by 420 km of car-free paths, which represents a landscape network of unparalleled scale in Europe.


Territories, Parks, Cultural

Euralens( 2013-2015)
Pôle Métropolitain de l’Artois (2017-2021)

Project Team:

MDP Michel Desvigne Paysagiste (lead consultant)
IHA Inessa Hansch Architecte
Pro Developpment


Reflection area: 99, 700 ha (246, 364 acres)
Sketches area: 35, 000 ha (86,486 acres)
Pathways: 420 km
Parks area: 4,200 ha

  • 11 major operational units :
    Lys Romane
    Contreforts de l'Artois
    Deux vallées
    Canal d'Aire
    Souchez Sites de mémoires
    Centralité Louvre Lens
    Canal de la Deûle
    Arc Nord
    Berges de la Souchez
    Arc Sud