The omnipresent & absent monument is dedicated to an alternative agenda of formulating a new typology of high-rise buildings within the historic city of Paris.
As one of the densest cities in the world that fails to expand horizontally with its suburbs as well its strict resistance against high-rise buildings within the administrative boundary, the city preserves a homogenous urban fabric that resembles a flat landscape. Therefore, the skyline of Paris is experienced through the monumental perspectives of a transverse axis marking the socio-political conditions in time through a series of monuments. Taking advantage of the strict regulations, the proposal formulates a new axis of higher symbolic value by connecting the three most prominent high-rise buildings and clusters within the city: La Defense, Tour Eiffel and Tour Montparnasse. It stands as a monument that is deemed acceptable within the urban context by subverting existing urban regulations to formulate the impression of a floating city.
Preservation is only a method to critique the image of Paris in time and offer a new typology that re-defines how the city is arranged. Promoting a form of propaganda, from the Parisian streets the floating urban blocks reflect the rooftops, to an impression that the city expands in its own image. However, at the level of 300 m, a composition of repetitive moments define situational architecture where the traditional and mundane reality is replaced with void courtyards, floating bridges, and flying public squares defining a threshold between the traditional and modern. Marking a new horizon, the Axis exist as a monument derived from rational regulations that shape the architecture of today, while offering an alternative agenda that impacts on the future of Paris.

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The Omnipresent & Absent Monument

A series of towers that define an omnipresent and absent monumentality that dissipate above Paris only to promote a hidden agenda of a new typology invisible from the ground and experienced in the sky.

The Omnipresent Monument

The omnipresent monument from the traditional city.

The Absent Monument

The floating city is a proposal that accomplishes a hidden agenda of a new typology that is completely absent from Paris, and can only be experienced by looking down on the city and its monumentality.

Parallel City

The horizontal top circulation resembles a new horizon line as well as the subverted ground floor that is the starting point into an ascent/ descent.

Alternate Typology

Rising 300m above Paris, the floating city provides a mix-use program setting, where repetitive moments generate situational architecture discussing a threshold between private and public areas.

Alternate Typology Definition

The alternate typology is defined by implementing the trace of the existing urban conditions in Paris, subverted and modified to formulate an alternative arrangement of the city.

Virtual Landscape

Subjective mapping of the homogeneous urban fabric to achieve a new virtual landscape for Paris.

Virtual City

The incremental growth of the urban fabric according to the re-populated virtual landscape alters the profile of Paris with an omnipresent monumentality.

The Floating City

The floating city uses the existing circulation as an extension of the traditional urban fabric.

The Future of Paris

"There are three hypotheses about the inhabitants of the city: that they hate the earth; that they respect it so much they avoid all contact; that they love it as it was before they existed and with spyglasses and telescopes aimed downward they never tire of examining it, contemplating with fascination their own absence." - Italo Calvino