12/10: Week 3, Second Half
It's difficult to keep pace when under the weather. A quick update from the second half of last week: Wednesday we revisited La Porte de Charpentras and the Arc Ancien in Orange. We also visited a church in Aubignon where the ceilings of the side aisles had collapsed. Thursday I was home sick. Friday was a quiet day at the office; the highlight was an afternoon presentation that Didier gave to a group of ironworkers. He spoke of the restoration of Pavilion Napoleon III at the Palais Royal in Phnom Penh, Cambodia in 1991; this was a true adventure, and largely an adventure of the human spirit. Over the weekend, I revelled again in the Saone Food Market, enjoyed the open house at the Lyon Hotel de Ville and exploring the silk route in the Croix Rousse part of town. I began preparations for the next stage of my journey. Thursday and Friday I will be in l'Isle d'Abeau, about 20-30 minutes outside of Lyon, and I return to Paris over the weekend. More news soon.
On Tuesday, I joined a tour of 288 rue de Vendome, Lyon, a 9-unit low income residential building, being given by its architects, Matthieu Valette and Jean-Baptiste Fleurent. The tour was for a series of officials interested in how this residential building on the edge of a historic zone in Lyon was modified to improve its energy performance while retaining a certain respect for its heritage and the heritage of the street.
Four Roman aquaducts are in Lyon; Gier is the longest one at 75 kilometers. It goes below ground, above ground, down a valley, and has four siphons to pull the water uphill to the Roman town of Lugdunum. On Monday afternoon, I joined Didier Repellin, ACMH, on a site visit to look at brick samples. The bases of the piers are eroding. There have been many philosophies of stabilization and restoration of these aquaducts over the centuries. The current philosophy is to rebuild the bases, only as much as is need to restore the structural integrity of the piers, using stone from the same quarry as the original, matching the mortar composition and color, and matching the brick as closely as possible. No false patina of age will be added to the changes, so for awhile, their newness will distinguish the additions. Future generations will have to rely on the documentation in the state archives of this project, as well as their own field observations. Click on "Read More" for images of the current approach and various previous approaches.