The Corniche Kennedy bench in Marseille is 3 km long, between the Fausse-Monnaie bridge and the Sofitel Palm Beach hotel, making it the longest bench in the world. Made of prefabricated concrete, it offers Marseilles residents a balcony over the Mediterranean and enabled the city to enter the record books in 1965.
A project to renovate the bench was carried out between 2019 and 2022, winning first place in the “Repair and Restoration” category by the American Concrete Institute (ACI).
Beyond its breathtaking panorama, 70 meters of the bench have been decorated with mosaic, created by artist Paola Cervoni in 2016. One sixth of the bench will be covered with mosaic by the 2024 Olympic Games.
For maximum efficiency, an ultra-high-performance fiber-reinforced concrete (UHPC) was selected to avoid erosion problems and increase the durability of the structure. This UHPC was admixed with CHRYSO®Optima 145 superplasticizer to formulate a low viscosity concrete with high rheological retention and CHRYSO®AB 42 admixture to reduce bubbling and the amount of air in the concrete. This solution made it possible to color the structure in the mass without covering it with a protective product on the outside to preserve the mineral appearance of the concrete as much as possible.
The color of the bench was carefully studied by our color laboratory to blend in with the color of the existing bench. The responsiveness and expertise of our teams resulted in the CHRYSO®Color Ocre Kennedy.
- CHRYSO®Optima 145
- CHRYSO®AB 42
- CHRYSO®Color Ocre Kennedy
Project technical challenges
The restoration of the Corniche Kennedy bench consisted of replacing certain parts of the bench, reinforcing the brackets, and bringing the parapet up to standard along the entire length of the bench, parts that had been progressively degraded by the sea air and spray. In total, 6,000 pieces of prefabricated concrete were made between the benches and the parapets for the rehabilitation of this architectural element.
General contractors: GTM SUD/Vinci Construction in partnership with Eiffage Construction
Project manager: SETEC and DIADES
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