Nantes-Bouguenais: A desire to decentralize - and the need to find space for facilities
In the mid-1970s, the LCPC started to be short
of space for the largest of its "large test facilities" which it needs for its
So, in 1975, the Laboratory set up a centre on 150 hectares of land in the Commune of Bouguenais near Nantes. This was large enough for the Pavement Fatigue Carrousel , the Reference and Road Experiment Track, the Pavement Materials Mixing Test Facility, the Geotechnical Centrifuge and many other outstanding facilities:
In the 1980s the advent of the TGV Atlantique
between Nantes and Paris eased links and contacts
between the two main sites.
Nantes has 8 research laboratories (several of which are split between Paris and Nantes) and 250 staff are employed at this site where a meal in the canteen is automatically followed by a short stroll - or sometimes even a long walk - in the countryside. The site needed to be 150 hectares, but it’s very big!