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The new space of the Oceanographic Museum, an architectural feat

1 May 2019 - 13h48

It was inaugurated last Saturday at the first edition of the Fête du Musée, this new space of 550m2 complex technical constraints hides many secrets and promises many discoveries to visitors.

A pharaonic project but discreet. “What we see today is hard work. The main challenge of the project was to ensure that the new structure fits perfectly with the existing site “, explains Joël Passeron, technical director of the Oceanographic Museum. Thus, four years have been necessary for the realization of this new structure. Three spaces for a single adventure. The trip begins in the permanent open-air awareness and awareness area, built in the extension of the Museum and on part of the Jardins Saint-Martin, on a surface of 550m2, retracing the great odyssey of sea turtles: from their cycle of life with threats to their existence, from the magic of spawning to the actions taken to preserve them. “The stakes that we had set in consultation with the state – since part of our space is on the right-of-way of the Jardins Saint-Martin – were to integrate a new structure on the site in an environmentally respectful, heritage and archaeological, “says the technical director of the institution.


Realized by Raymond Architecte, this new space has been the center of many discoveries. First of all, in order to preserve the local fauna, the species present on site have been relocated and re-implanted “elsewhere but still in the cliff”. Then, the Museum of Prehistoric Anthropology carried out excavations and finds … A whole series of remains were discovered. Through these researches old structures have emerged and have been fully preserved in the project of the architect. A feat. Also noteworthy is the installation of acoustic fences, which are essential for the continuity of museum activities and neighboring establishments.

When the sea takes land on the ground

The highlight of the project, a rehabilitation pool of 160m3 to accommodate turtles treated before their future return to sea with the expertise of CMSEM. “There was a ‘community of values’ around this project. It was a difficult challenge. The site is visited almost naturally and in total connection with the Museum. A drop of water from the Mediterranean has come here, “says Patrick Raymond, architect of the project. For visitors, this new space seems to have always existed, in fact, it shows a “work of lace”, complex but effective.

Daniela Guerra

©Musée Océanographique

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