L’Hermitage, tomorrow’s world is here today

In a town called Autrêch­es, near Com­piègne, L’Hermitage is a large «play­ground» for cit­i­zen exper­i­men­ta­tion, open to its ter­ri­to­ry. It is ani­mat­ed around the themes of agro-ecol­o­gy, ener­gy and dig­i­tal tran­si­tion. It is a loca­tion with a col­lec­tive approach in search of inno­va­tion on impact projects. 

Her­mitage, , noun. sing.1. a place active in the themes of liv­ing togeth­er, agro-ecol­o­gy, ener­gy tran­si­tion and cit­i­zen hack­ing. For the past four years, L’Her­mitage on a 30-hectare­site has been devot­ed to rur­al and civic inno­va­tion. Twen­ty-one build­ings, 21 hectares of wood­land and 3 hectares of arable land for resourc­ing, exper­i­ment­ing, under­tak­ing and con­crete­ly con­nect­ing to the chal­lenges of trans­form­ing our societies. 

Among the strong points devel­oped in this unique site, putting new tech­nolo­gies at the ser­vice of the gen­er­al inter­est, are the need to live and feed one­self in an envi­ron­men­tal­ly friend­ly way, the need to live with dig­ni­ty in low-ener­gy build­ings and the need to share ideas and know-how. “It all start­ed with a group of friends who, at the end of 2016, want­ed to give a future to this emblem­at­ic place which was the scene of fight­ing dur­ing the First World War, then a med­ical cen­tre and the head­quar­ters of an inter­na­tion­al NGO. Today, a whole ecosys­tem can be found there. Entre­pre­neurs, a mar­ket gar­den­er, a brew­er, an asso­cia­tive café, a sem­i­nar cen­tre and a dig­i­tal school,” explains Loïc Pen­tecôte, a found­ing mem­ber of L’Her­mitage, who is in charge of the eco-ren­o­va­tion of the build­ing and the ener­gy and cli­mate refer­ral. In 2020, he was also appoint­ed as an exter­nal mem­ber of the TSH depart­ment council,and is involved in the UTC’s sus­tain­able ‘Col­lec­tive Engi­neer­ing’ (CIS).

Four UTC graduates work full time at the Hermitage

Loïc Pen­tecôte, who grad­u­at­ed from UTC in 2013 with an engi­neer­ing degree in the major Process Engi­neer­ing (GP), is part of the team devel­op­ing the site with Math­ieu Karinthi, who majored in Urban Engi­neer­ing (GU-2015), found­ing part­ner of L’Her­mitage, Raphaël Lan­garet, major­ing in bio­log­i­cal engi­neer­ing (GB-2016), co-founder of Végé­to, an aquapon­ics com­pa­ny based in L’Her­mitage, Jacques de Bucy, who grad­u­at­ed in Process Engi­neer­ing (GP-2011), CEO of SCICSENS, a com­pa­ny based in L’Her­mitage and cospon­sor of the SCEA Les Jardins de l’Her­mitage (agroe­co­log­i­cal mar­ket gar­den­ing micro-farm). Sev­er­al pro­fes­sors and researchers from the UTC have found in L’Her­mitage a place of inspi­ra­tion and poten­tial part­ner­ships for their work, such as Clé­ment Mabi, Olivi­er Gapenne, Pas­cal Jol­livet, Frédéric Huet, David Flacher… 

The sin­gu­lar dynam­ics of this net­work is based on the great vari­ety of its actors, from cit­i­zens equipped with 3D print­ers to spe­cial­ized ter­ri­to­r­i­al actors (fab labs, hack­er­spaces, third inno­va­tion places), includ­ing VSEs and SMEs. A very con­crete exam­ple is the unprece­dent­ed and mas­sive mobil­i­sa­tion of the seac­tors at the begin­ning of the health cri­sis to pro­duce masks and visors. In this con­text, L’Her­mitage was at the cen­tre of the cre­ation of the Fab­ri­Com­muns col­lec­tive and plat­form (fabricommuns.org), which made it pos­si­ble to man­u­fac­ture more than one mil­lion items. 

Le magazine

Novembre 2023 - N°61

Activité physique, nutrition & santé

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