Construction of the 5th phase :

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       From June 1966 to the end of 1970, the lake town was built. A village life was naturally created with the numerous shops that allowed the new residents to find everything they needed to have a pleasant stay. The bars, brasseries and restaurants were always busy during the summer. It was a permanent party in this new tourist destination which attracted more and more people...

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The 5th phase :

       It includes :

                  1 - The Place des Artisans, also called Cour of Artisans which is composed of :
- 59 flats
- 28 shops

                  2 - Le Quai des Fossés, located at the entrance to the lake city, on the Avenue de la Mer. This quay includes 13 houses.

       Work began in the summer of 1968.

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La place des Artisans :

       The Place des Artisans was to house potters, ceramists, painters, sculptors and art galleries in order to create a real craft centre, the Arts Quarter of the city.

       Unfortunately, not many craftsmen took advantage of this new space...

la maquette de la place des Artisans
The 1st model of the Place des Artisans.

       The original model of the Craftsmen's Square is very far from the final result: This Arts Quarter was supposed to be a large covered market where the Craftsmen could have worked on the square, sheltered from bad weather and the sun...

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       The Place des Artisans is the first square at the entrance to the lake town. It is therefore an obligatory passage for all those who come from outside. It is reached by a bridge called 'pont de la Poterne'.
       Its construction, together with that leading to the Market Square, was built on land.

Pont du Marché et pontde la Poterne en construction
The square will be located between these 2 bridges...

place des Artisans en construction

Le chantier de PORT GRIMAUD

       The time is long gone when it was thought that one tranche built and sold would finance the next.
       To the great surprise and delight of the Architect, the order book for the purchase of a property in the estate is sufficiently full for several tranches to be built at the same time :
       Place du Marché, Rue des 2 Ports and Ile Longue are already well underway, while Rue du Septentrion is just emerging, as is Place des Artisans, but only on the canal side.

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Placedes Artisans
In January 1969 and today...
Buildings are going up around the main bridge. The canal is still not in water...

Anectode :

       Mr Lubrina was the first hairdresser to set up shop in the Place des Artisans.
       He told me, when he was still practising, that he had bought his premises and the adjoining flat, at the Paris Boat Show where a model of PORT GRIMAUD was exhibited by the team promoting the lake city. Many orders were negotiated.
       His title deed in his pocket, here he is, landing in PORT GRIMAUD with his wife who was absolutely frightened to arrive in the middle of a strange building site where bridges were coming out of the ground while the canal in front of their future living room was filled with earth! Once the surprise was over, a big, very big angry outburst followed, with many insults directed at her sheepish husband, who was just as surprised to arrive in a city under construction...
       He was finally able to arrange his living room and open it many weeks later, while an atmosphere of divorce hung over the couple.
       The first summer was a success, erasing any past resentment, and the couple found serenity and love !

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Le Quai des Fossés :

Quai des Fossés

quai des Fosses
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Quai des fosses
It is a small tunnel that connects the canal at the entrance to the Poterne and the western canal. It allows a natural flow of water, avoiding any stagnation.
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Aerial views of the works :

Construction de PORT GRIMAUD
The Poterne bridge is still on the ground, with cars parked around it. Work on the Quai des Fossés is progressing while the 7th section is being built.

Construction de PORT GRIMAUD
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La Tour des Célibataires :

       The architect was inspired by the Turkish forts on the Barbary coast to create this polygonal construction called the "Tour des célibataires" because it was originally intended to house seasonal staff. Three storeys high, with a central courtyard in the middle, it was intended to give the impression of entering a walled city.
       Construction began in February 1970 and took about 6 months.

La tour des Célibataires

La tour des Célibataires

La tour des Célibataires

La tour des Célibataires

La tour des Célibataires
The only thing missing is the shops on the tower side, which should give the effect of a wall when you arrive at PORT GRIMAUD. No windows!
The access bridge, the porch and the wall: where the only thing missing is a drawbridge to give the impression that one is entering an old medieval city!

La tour des Célibataires

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  the work of François SPOERRY...