Abbal Collective

Déniché pour vous 124 file

septiembre 2023

Réseau des collectivités Territoriales pour une Economie Solidaire (RTES)

The « Déniché pour Vous » files have been developed by the RTES. They present local initiatives in France, their environment, their purpose and their development, with particular emphasis on the role of local authorities. Whether the initiatives focus on the energy transition, shared spaces, the circular economy, food, sustainable mobility, immigration or digital technology, these case studies offer an instructive immersion in the field of territorial social innovation.

The Abbal collective aims to transform vacant spaces in the heart of the Grand Mirail district into living and working spaces that promote economic development, employment, culture and, more broadly, social cohesion.

Para descargar: fiche_deniche_pour_vous_n_124_-_collectif_abbal_0.pdf (460 KiB)

Origin and presentation of the initiative

The City of Toulouse has entrusted Agence Intercalaire with 2600m² of premises on a transitional basis to develop a place to live and do business in the Reynerie priority neighbourhood. A total of 37 projects from the neighbourhood and beyond have joined forces to create this third-location space, through the Dalle Abbal occupants’ association (the Abbal collective), which runs this space with a central theme of entrepreneurship, serving economic development, employment, culture and social cohesion in the neighbourhood.

As part of the urban renewal programme, a 2,600m² site, historically well known to local residents for having successively housed the former social centre and the CAF, then more recently town hall services and an entertainment centre, is due to be demolished in 2024 to make way for the Cité de la danse.

The City of Toulouse is anxious not to leave unoccupied spaces that could be of use to the district, during the period between the departure at the end of 2021 of the public structures initially occupying the building, and the demolition of the building and the start of work scheduled for the end of 2024. It has therefore decided to launch a transitional urban planning project. It was in this context that the local authority launched a call for projects, which was won by Agence Intercalaire (a cooperative working on the temporary occupation of unused buildings and spaces, and which manages 4 other transitional urbanism sites in Toulouse), which led to the signing of a two-year temporary authorisation to occupy public space. The permit, which was due to expire at the end of the first half of 2023, has now been extended to mid-2024.

At the same time, the Dalle Abbal occupiers’ association (the Abbal collective) was set up to run the site, and all the structures occupying the third-location space have joined it. In total, since December 2021, the 2,000 sq. m. of office space and 600 sq. m. of workshop space has housed 37 organisations, selected on the basis of their willingness to work in the neighbourhood, and with a view to bringing together organisations from different backgrounds and sectors of activity. This sharing of space enables them to develop their activity, while sharing good tips, contacts and moments, and pooling spaces and machines. These include: Toulouse Espace Couture (which offers a coworking space with a number of different types of equipment), Toulouse Espace de l’art (which offers a number of different types of equipment), Toulouse Espace de l’art (which offers a number of different types of equipment), and Toulouse Espace de l’art (which offers a number of different types of equipment). If necessary, the Agence intercalaire will help some of the residents to find a place in the district or within other temporary occupation projects that the organisation manages.

Business model and links with local authorities

All of this resonates with Toulouse Métropole’s « Parcours Entreprises ESS », which aims to find accommodation solutions for SSE companies, and with axis 5 « Supporting and promoting SSE totem places » of its SSE strategy, through which the local authority supports the establishment of SSE third places. This « transitional space » is one of the « Territoires de l’ESS » (SSE Territories), a map of third places in the Toulouse metropolitan area that are committed to the SSE sector. The Agence intercalaire is also a member of the Toulouse Métropole Impact collective, which brings together 22 local players working to develop the SSE sector.