At the beginning of this 21st century, the role of the city – real, wished for, or only dreamed of – is a question that preoccupies many of us. The whole of Switzerland can be considered as one metropolis composed of several poles, and its rapidly growing cities are taking on a national role. Among the key participants in this debate are the Ecole polytechnique fédérale (Federal Institute of Technology) and the University of Lausanne.
In Lausanne (as elsewhere), these changes are forcing a number of issues to be reconsidered, and a number of new projects, such as the rezoning of some neighbourhoods and the renovation of infrastructures (sporting, cultural or transport). These issues characterize the current discourse on urbanism and suggest the arrival of enduring changes.