Plan Voisin was a planned redevelopment of central Paris designed by French Swiss architect Le Corbusier in 1925. It was sponsored by his friend, the avante garde aircraft and automobile builder Gabriel Voisin, whose cutting-edge design aesthetic Le Corbusier admired. The project is one of Le Corbusier’s most well known.
In 1922, Le Corbusier presented Ville Contemporaine at Salon d’Automne; the plan was a utopian urban concept intended to house three million inhabitants in a series of skyscrapers. Following the exhibition, Le Corbusier continued work on the project, developing the plan from a non site-specific concept to a concrete proposal.
Le Corbusier’s motivation to develop the Plan Voisin was founded in frustrations with the urban design of Paris.
While those of comparable urban centers relocated to suburbs, the bourgeois residents of late 19th century Paris largely remained in the city center. Pushed out by rising land prices, poorer Parisians left for shanty towns on the city’s outskirts. Economic segregation was exacerbated by Georges Haussmann’s renovation of the city which separated affluent and poor neighborhoods with wide avenues.
Within Paris’ poorer neighborhoods severe disease, worsened by poor sanitation was rampant. Tuberculosis, in particular, was highly concentrated within the city’s slums.