Redevelopment Place du Marché Aigle (MEP)

Redevelopment Place du Marché Aigle (MEP)
The Municipality of Aigle gave mandate to four interdisciplinary teams for a parallel study about the redevelopment of the Place du Marché, the town’s central square. 

The temporary project ‘Three Pavilions’, that we completed in 2021, was the first step to revitalize the Place du Marché. The pavilions served as an introduction and stimulus to change the residents' and municipalities’ perspective on the square – to bring a new identity, revalue this central square as a place for encounter, a place for the residents.

We set up a series of dialogues with local inhabitants, including them in the process of defining both qualities and bottlenecks of the square and its surroundings, in three (physical and visual) scales: small (250 meters distance from the square) , medium (500 meters ) and large (750 meters and more).

We also (re-)defined the perimeter of the square with the residents, through on-site explorations.

As a result of the accumulation of different historical layers, the current square has a 2.5 metre difference in level between the upper part (entrance to the town hall) and the lower part of Rue Plantour, fragmenting the different uses and users with barriers and obstacles.

This was the starting point for the proposal: to remove the obstacles and create a continuous topography, which connects these different levels and actors (architectural elements and uses) of the square, in the three different scales, and to create new, generous entrances to the adjacent buildings. 

In order to strengthen the connections between the buildings and the eastside of the square, we proposed to adapt the main street ‘Avenue Chavron’, by changing its speed limit, its amount of tracks, adding a bus stop and introducing a large crosswalk. 

In addition, we proposed to modify the entrance of the current municipal building to promote accessibility. Opening the building on the second floor creating a balcony in connection with the square, as an extension of it. 

For us, water always plays an important role. Since Aigle has a ‘Balade des Fontaines’, a series of 27 fountains throughout the city, one of which also opens onto the square, we proposed a part of the square with a (playful) water feature. 

Also, we attach importance to work with materials that are permeable, thus transforming the pavement into semi-paving, in combination with areas of vegetation with flowers and trees and with gravel, which help to mitigate the water. 

Historically, the square used to be full of trees with benches around, inviting the residents to reside, for longer stays. Inspired by this original, historical situation, we made a selection of trees and plants and introduced areas with different atmospheres, such as a collective vegetable garden in the southern part of the square.

All areas are combined with elements for sitting, benches, chairs and tables. Some of them can be used by the restaurants that surround the square.

With the Three Pavilions we introduced new functions to the square. A new bus stop with a kiosk and public toilets could be seen as the fourth ‘pavilion’, one that remains permanently on the square. 

We reserved a large area free of elements for a weekly market, and seasonal activities and festivities, and one area in the southwest side for events – in the form of a circle, surrounded by steps, as an amphitheatre towards the sunset.


Commune d’Aigle, department d’urbanisme, mobilité et paysage

Aigle, Switzerland


Alexandra Sonnemans and Caterina Viguera - rotative studio (project leader), Pauline Revaz - bisa bureau d'ingénieurs sa (civil engineer), Kevin Merino - Atelier Point de Vue (landscape architect), Olivier Company (artist), Julien Eneichen and Rachel Mullon - En Commun (participatory process), 8 citzens of Aigle

rotative studio