The Bordeaux water mirror

The Bordeaux water mirror
The Bordeaux water mirror

When large cities undertake major urban renovations, it is generally the right occasion for urban planning, architecture and other artistic disciplines to generate new urban references that are born with the purpose of being the new emblems of that city and samples of his contemporary vocation.

The examples are numerous, but in recent years an idea that usually inspires this type of action is that the citizen can live and enjoy these interventions in the first person. May he feel reflected in them. Even that he feels physically reflected. It is an idea that we have already seen for example here when talking about the Mirror Pavilion that was built in Marseille coinciding with the renovation of its famous Old Port.


Mirror of the water in Bordeaux

Well, without leaving France, we propose another type of mirror that is also the result of a very ambitious urban intervention. It's the Mirror of Bordeaux water.

Its name is not deceiving, it is a mirror created with water. But not only that, it is neither more nor less than the largest in the world with its characteristics since it covers an area of ​​almost 3,500 square meters. And it is located in the monumental heart of the Bordeaux city, in its Place de la Borse.

This is a 2006 work designed by landscape architect Michel Corajuoud, and in whosematerialization had to intervene a multidisciplinary team made up of hydraulic engineers or historians. Together they created a huge base with granite slabs on which there is a layer of 2 centimeters of water, so that the entire surface becomes a mirror.

But not only that, it is a walkable area, in which passers-by integrate and reflect, and of course passers-by cool off on the hottest days thanks to the various vaporizers that at times envelop the place in mist. In this way it is a space lived by the people of Bordeaux and also by its visitors.

However, when it was designed, it was not only thought of those types of reflections. The views that it was going to provide in fusion with its surroundings were taken into account. Since on one side it has the wide bed of the Garonne River, already very close to its mouth in the Atlantic Ocean. And on the other is the monumental complex of the Place du Bourse de Bordeaux.

In this way, in this mirror of the beginning of the 21st century, the facades of the 18th century neoclassical buildings that were designed by the architect Ange-Jacques Gabriel, member of a long saga of architects and who worked closely with King Louis XV, especially in Versailles, where he left his masterpiece: the Petit Trianon pavilion.

In this way, the work of the Mirror of water has become part of the entire monumental complex. So much so that this contemporary creation is also integrated into the declaration ofWorld Heritage owning the old town of Bordeaux.

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