École d’architecture
de la ville & des territoires

Jean-François Blassel

    Born in 1956, Jean-François Blassel is a research professor and engineer (degree in 1978 from the École Centrale Paris). After participating in a rehabilitation project on a slum in Morocco, he decided to continue his studies with a Masters of Architecture (1983) at the University of Oregon on the west coast of the United States.

    After finishing his studies, he collaborated on The Edelman Partnership involving several housing projects in New York’s low-income areas. In 1987, he joined Renzo Piano’s Parisian agency. There he worked on, notably, the design of the prize-winning project for the international competition of the Kansai airport, and, thus, moved to Osaka for the development and realization of this project. During that time he also founded BL(o)T, winning team of the French Ministry of Culture and Communication’s competition for young architects (Albums de la jeune architecture) in 1994.

    Upon returning to Paris in 1991, Jean-François Blassel joined RFR, the Irish engineer, Peter Rice’s team, and would be one of its directors until 2011. In this context, he did many infrastructure projects in France and abroad including the double viaducts and the TGV train station in Avignon, the train stations of Lille, Strasbourg, Bellegarde and Belfort as well as other crossing structures.

    In 2016, Jean-François Blassel founded SPAN, workshop where architecture links closely with the material and energy performance of projects. His work has been awarded many prizes including the Equerre d’argent 2017 in the category of works of art for the Nelson Mandela footbridge in Creil.

    Jean-François Blassel has taught in architecture schools since 1982, first abroad including several years with the Emerging Technologies program at the Graduate School of Design at the University of Pennsylvania, then in France. He has contributed actively to the pedagogical offerings at the School of Architecture, Cities, and Regions -East Paris and has taught there since its opening in 1998. He created its PoCa (Post-Carbon) post-Master’s DPEA [« degree specific to architecture schools »] certification which he currently heads and where he leads, with his colleagues, forward-thinking reflection about the contemporary crises impacting the climate, energies, the material and the living, and which redefine the very conditions of the existence of architecture.

    From 2015 to 2019, Jean-François Blassel was president of the school’s Board of Directors.

    • Enseigne en Licence – Champ Projet
    • Enseigne en Post-master
    • Enseigne en Post-master
    • Membre de l’équipe de recherche

    Activité de praticien

    • Associé fondateur du bureau d'études SPAN
    • Architecte libéral


    • Équerre d’Argent 2017, catégorie Ouvrages d’Art, pour la passerelle Nelson Mandela sur l’Oise à Creil

    Articles et travaux (sélection)

    • Dini, Matteo/Royer-De-Vericourt, Raphaël/Quaglia, Adrien/Reiser, Christian/Blassel, Jean-François [2018]: Advanced method for fine-tuning of statically indeterminate interdependent cable systems. Dans: International Journal of Space Structures, v. 33, n. 1 (mars 2018), pp. 61-69.
    • Blassel, Jean-François / Garcia, Daniel / Rieser, Christian / Cooper, Tom / McDonagh, Michael / Whitcomb, Brent (2014): Design and Construction of St. Patrick's Pedestrian Bridge in Calgary. Présenté pendant: Footbridge 2014 - Past, Present & Future, London, 16-18 July 2014.
    • Blassel, Jean-François / Pfadler, Andreas (2008): La gare de Strasbourg. Dans: Construction Métallique, n. 1 ( 2008), pp. 15-36.
    • Bardsley, Henry / Blassel, Jean-François / Kutterer, Mathias / Vaudeville, Bernard (1998): Glas - Haut und Oberfläche. Dans: Detail - Zeitschrift für Architektur + Baudetail, v. 38, n. 3 ( 1998), pp. 320.
    • Blassel, Jean-François / Desvignes, Michel / Virlogeux, Michel: Les viaducs sur le Rhône à Avignon. Dans: Formes et Structure, n. 127, pp. 41.

    Revue de presse (sélection)
    AMC du 23/11/2017

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