A graduate from Ecole Polytechnique and Ecole Nationale des Ponts et Chaussées (Ponts ParisTech), Etienne Tricaud is also an architect. He started out as a structural engineer in 1985 in the design office of Ove Arup & Partners in London and RFR in Paris. He contributed, among other things, to the study of numerous glass and steel structures, including the glass roofs covering courtyards in the Louvre. For some years he also taught structural design to future architects at Paris la Seine School of Architecture.
In 1986 he met Jean-Marie Duthilleul, with whom he shares a similar vision of project development, which combines a rational, context-driven approach with special attention to usage and identity of place. A project leader at SNCF, and then head of the Stations Agency from 1993, he was tasked with the project of restructuring Montparnasse mainline station in Paris. That particular project served as a test-bed for building a team and creating a global approach and an architectural language which he was to subsequently develop in numerous railway station programmes. He founded AREP with Jean-Marie Duthilleul in 1997, and became its Chief Executive Officer .
Etienne Tricaud collaborated on a wide range of major construction programmes, namely civil engineering, town and regional planning, architecture, and design from metropolitan area to whole urban neighbourhoods, to individual buildings and items of urban furniture.
Together, they designed various projects in France and in the world: the stations of Avignon, Paris Est, Strasbourg, Torino, Shanghai and Casa-Port, the museum of Beijing, towers in Beijing, Doha and Ho-Chi-Minh as well as urban studies in Vietnam, in Saudi Arabia and in Russia.
Asia and key emerging countries have embarked in an impressive movement of infrastructure urbanization and modernization. And while these major projects mobilize international expertise, they are however quite different from those conducted in Europe or the United States. The decision-making processes are not the same, and today's architects and planners are putting an emphasis on the very experience of space, which varies considerably from one culture to another.
L'Asie et les grands pays émergents sont engagés dans un impressionnant mouvement d'urbanisation et de modernisation de leurs infrastructures. S'ils mobilisent un savoir-faire international, ces grands projets sont pourtant bien différents de ceux menés en Europe ou aux Etats-Unis. Les processus de prise de décisions ne sont pas les mêmes et, plus fondamentalement, les usages et l'expérience de l'espace sur lesquels sont fondés ces projets varient sensiblement d'une culture à l'autre.