Seventeen caissons form the belt but there are eighteen of them in total. The last one, which is equipped with a swimming pool, is located at the entrance of the port d’anima- tion in front of the C1 caisson.
Together these eighteen caissons make up this monumental 500-metre long superstruc- ture. The main purpose of the caisson belt is to protect the new district currently being built, including the land, the buildings and the park that will be built there in the future. It acts as a rampart by absorbing the energy of the swell and the strongest waves into specially designed damping chambers, hence cutting off their effects on the infrastructure.
Photo © Bouygues TP MC
The caisson belt is also a surprising setting for fauna and flora. Thanks to a series of very special devices specifically developed for the Monaco offshore extension, plants, algae and marine animals are encouraged to colonise the submerged caissons.
These eco-design methods that offer solutions to promote the development of biodiver- sity were implemented from the start of the project, with continuing R&D (research and development) on these subjects.
Almost invisible to today’s observer and to tomorrow’s resident and visitor, the innovative techniques that have been used here are nevertheless essential for the construction and sustainability of the eco-district and its integration into the natural environment. They are a perfect illustration of ‘urban biodiversity’, a new and sustainable concept.