Leroy-Merlin, Kiabi, Decathlon, Carrefour... In the Madeleine district of Chartres, these big brands that disfigure the entrance to the city should gradually disappear ... to revive on the other side of Avenue Jean Mermoz, on the north-eastern plateau, a former air base of 250 ha bought from the State ten years ago.
Everything is not yet set, but the first visuals of this new "district" have been unveiled. Designed in partnership with the Mercialys group, a real estate company that manages some fifty commercial areas, it will include 75,000 m2 of shops, restaurants, plus 400 homes, all in a peaceful atmosphere.
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"We will bury all the parking, we will have double-sloped roofs, not hangars, there will be green spaces, a bus with high level of service, and even an aerotram," says Franck Masselus, deputy in charge of finance and prospective. "We have done a lot of work on urban integration," adds Amina Tonner, Director of Urban Promotion and Projects at Mercialys.
Cited as an example by the government
The project has appealed to the highest level of the state, as the government cited it as an example when announcing the national program for the transformation of commercial areas in mid-September. Building permits are expected to be filed from 2025 and the work is expected to take about two years.
Over time, this area will accommodate other housing - 2,600 in total - as well as tertiary premises, not to mention the new exhibition centre due to open next year. As for the Madeleine district, which has 8,000 inhabitants, it should also radically change its face since the areas vacated by shops should make it possible to rethink it, again to find a more pleasant environment.