Common metropolis

Metropolitan hikes for those involved in public planning

On the edge of the urban and territorial consultation organized by the Interministerial Mission for the Metropolitan Project, the GR2013 Guides Office offered teams to explore the territory for four days, along the metropolitan path: days walks punctuated by discussions and exchanges, meals facing the landscapes shared with the members of the teams but also with the interministerial mission, the elected officials, the participants in the worksites, the inhabitants.

The opportunity to showcase our knowledge prior to the project and pass on to the teams several years of metropolitan culture patiently developed over the course of the explorations carried out since 2011 as well as during the projects organized by the prefect Laurent Théry.

Beyond the gesture of hospitality by the invitation to embark on the largest metropolitan hiking project, it was the opportunity to accomplish the GR 2013 project which, from the beginning went beyond the strict cultural framework to be a instrument for reading the territory first and then for planning.

These 80 km of walk in the high places of the metropolis completed placing the themes of the landscape, the city-nature relationship, the spectacular dimension, at the heart of the consultation. Until a few years ago, these themes hardly existed in public discourse, nor on the scale of Marseille, and even less on that of the metropolis.

Revealing the high places of the metropolitan area by showing them through the menu, the ground, in all their historical dimensions, has forged a concrete bond with the teams, which explains their importance in their proposals.

“We especially remember, thanks to the metropolitan hikes, two characteristic aspects of the territory: its spectacular side, the great points of view that can be discovered while passing from one valley to another, but also its side“ live happily, live hidden ” which leads to improbable cohabitations between activity zones, river, micro beach… ”David Mangin, SEURA team

“Metropolitan hikes have really made it possible to make the planning temptation of the town planner obsolete, but to make him the bearer of stories about the territory.” Fabienne Boudon, Project Manager, LIN team


Itineraries with overnight stay to live in the peri-urban area.

Accompanied by walking artists, the observation of the landscapes leads little by little to create the space of a bivouac and the time of a vigil.

Knowledge sharing

Study trips and workshops …

Walking is the scale for reading the landscape, particularly suitable for those who want to understand and feel the universe that surrounds it.

Change posture, be open to the knowledge of some, to the memory of others, to enter into the physical and historical depth of a territory, of a landscape.

Create a dynamic and poetic relationship with your daily entourage …

The walker is no longer a distant observer but participates, qualifies himself through the exchange, listening and the encounters he makes while walking.

“Understand its past, its present uses and the challenges of its future.”

It is this approach to walking, which reveals, updates, poetizes what is there and that the Bureau des Guides invites to put into practice through these three “formats”:

Study trips | Group

They are tailor-made and in collaboration with upstream teachers. They give rise to further research work after the trip is over.

OBJECTIVE: Create group cohesion, meet each other differently, apply theoretical knowledge, initiate a theme starting from the field …

DURATION: From one to several days, possibility of bivouac.

AUDIENCE: Students in architecture, art and design, town planning, landscape …

Workshops | Individual

On a defined theme, these training periods open to everyone are moments of sharing and pooling of knowledge. They can give rise to a joint restitution.

OBJECTIVE: To enrich one’s knowledge and practice, meet project partners, discover a territory …

DURATION: From one to several days, possibility of bivouac.

AUDIENCE: Students, Artists, Professionals of culture and territorial development …

Workshops | Teambuilding

Moments of reflection for a team, the putting into practice and the confrontation of knowledge in the field brings out new ideas, questions and lays the foundations of collective work.

OBJECTIVE: Confront theory and practice, create group cohesion, meet each other differently, initiate a theme starting from the field.

DURATION: ½ day to several days.

AUDIENCE: Technicians from local authorities, culture and regional development professionals.

Nature for city life

5 years of exploring city / nature relationships in the metropolitan areas of Aix-Marseille Provence and Toulon Provence Méditerranée

By transposing the practice of long-distance hiking in our metropolitan areas, the actions emerging from the Nature for city Life project inform the various actors of the city (inhabitants, urban planners, elected officials, students, etc.) on the role of urban green and blue infrastructures in the face of to climate change. A narrative approach based on sensitive exploration is favored, favoring an active appropriation of the issues and an involvement of the participants through walks, thematic workshops, bivouacs, editorial and observation tools or even the design of a new path in the metropolis. Toulon Provence Mediterranean.

On the GR2013, monthly walks are thus offered by Nicolas Mémain and the SAFI collective, and in the Toulon metropolis, by Paul-Hervé Lavessière, with a view to the construction of a Metropolitan Path of Greater Toulon.

During 5 years, these guides, will develop, a small popular university of metropolitan ecology – a “public service mission to think, to walk, to transmit”.

The Nature 4 City Life project is a project coordinated by the Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur Region, with the city of Marseille, the Aix-Marseille Provence metropolis, the Toulon Provence Méditerranée metropolis, the Nice Côte d’Azur metropolis, Air Paca, the Ecology Population Development Laboratory (AMU university), the GR2013 guides office.

To approach from different angles, and at different scales, this question of the relationship between city and nature, we have identified some specific themes and territories that will be approached during these 5 years.

1 / River monographs

Coastal rivers, canals, basins… blue infrastructures are the basis of green infrastructures, and therefore structural elements of the metropolis. They allow you to explore specific environments in several municipalities and also to appreciate various methods of development and management.

2 / The green network practiced

The Green Trame Strolls offers you to practice a section of the “green trame” on foot by experiencing the relationship to movement in concrete terms, and by focusing more particularly on an animal or plant species in its use of the corridors.

3 / The Etang de Berre

In 2020, public events report the culmination of a long investigation into the ecological issues of the Etang de Berre.

4 / The Ruisseau des Aygalades

As a collective awareness emerges about the role of a coastal river such as the Aygalades, walks will be offered from source to mouth.

5 / Foresta

In the context of the Foresta project which gradually installs the representation, uses and modes of management of an urban park based on a former industrial wasteland, the principle of Walked Conversations is to invite scientists to walk on site, in order to to collect the ecological stories of places, thanks to the sharing of various knowledge.

6 / Toulon Provence Mediterranean

The walks are intended to bring out both a new metropolitan path, and an understanding of ecological issues for both professionals and residents.

Metropolitan trails academy

Cycle of meetings and tools to learn about trails …

The Academy of Metropolitan Trails are both a tool and an innovative practice for rediscovering our inhabited territories and redefining our political geographies. The Academy of Metropolitan Trails is an educational project that provides avenues for building metropolitan trails and reading about metropolises. The establishment of a metropolitan path goes hand in hand with the establishment of “local educational communities” (on the model of the heritage communities of Faro). Within these communities, a civic practice of sharing knowledge and sharing expertise takes place on the ground, while walking, through the production of a charter, a guide and MOOCs (translated into 6 languages ), 6 structures combine their knowledge to define a common base that will allow new project leaders to develop their own practice, to design their project and to work both with communities and with civil society (artists, associations) in based on a complex panel of skills and experiences, both technical, human and relational.

Birth of an urban school

Between town planning, ecology, tourism and contemporary art, the Metropolitan Paths are urban facilities that renew our representations and practices of the contemporary city. The Metropolitan Paths are open platforms for continuing education in the city in all its aspects. Wishing to share their know-how, several creators of Sentiers Métropolitains d’Europe have come together to found the Académie des Sentiers Métropolitains, which in 2020 is publishing a charter, a methodological guide and a Mooc.

The Academy was designed at the end of the General Assembly of Metropolitan Trails, held at the Mucem in December 2017, during the inauguration of the Metropolitan Trails Showcase. It is coordinated by Metropolitan Trails, with PathsOfGreece, Trekking Italia, Büro für Städtereisen, urbanegestalt, Le Bureau des guides du GR2013 and Mucem. A project co-financed by the Erasmus + agency of the European Union as part of an educational program for adults.