Model – Secheron in Geneva, Switzerland
SÃ©cheron, the historic stronghold of the Geneva mechanical industry, today represents an encouraging ecological model. In 2001, the local authorities and multinational directors from the Sechon company joined forces to establish a pilot project combining sustainable urban development, renewable energy and aesthetics. Quoted in an article by Carole Vann:
â€œThe idea was to restore life to this perimeter, while linking the international district with the landing pier for â€œMouettesâ€ (the lake shuttle boat that joins the other bank). Drivers can thus leave their car in the car park and use public transport to go to workâ€, explains Albane Ferraris, a town planner for the City of Geneva.
Other aspects of rejuvenation included easier access to the tram and train, a huge garage for bikes, bike paths, a pedestrian walk from the lake to the Parc des Nations, a project to build an elderly peopleâ€™s home, a community centre for young people, an infant day care centre, low-cost housing, a Peace Community Centre and vast open spaces.
Other environmental initiatives include the company’s three tall translucent buildings made of recyclable materials so as to limit heating, air conditioning and artificial lighting needs. They have also designed a heat pump to draw water from a nearby lake to reduce the company’s CO2 emissions of 4800 tonnes and in fuel oil consumption of 1500 tonnes, while at the same time increasing heated surface area by 60%. In the end, 76% of the energy used will be renewable.