The BEG Ingénierie Ile de France Agency, the project management at its heart!

Publié le 2 July 2020

Interview of Gilles Coutens, Director of Paris agency.

(reading time: 5 minutes)

You are the head of BEG Ingénierie agency in Paris. What is your background?

I am both an old and new employee of BEG Ingénierie. Indeed, from 1998 to 2007, I was in charge of the Lille and then Lyon branches. Afterwards, I chose to work for real estate departments in the retail sector, at Casino and next Carrefour. In 2018, I got the opportunity to come back to BEG Ingénierie to take over the management of the Ile de France branch. I had always kept good contacts with the company, and it was with great pleasure that I came back, with my 10 years of experience in project ownership.

Can you tell us about the Ile de France branch?

The agency is located in Montrouge, near the Porte d’Orléans. It was created following the purchase of DHM Ingénierie in 2007 and is specialized in project management for mass distribution. Nowadays, the agency has 6 employees: 2 project managers, a DPLG‑ architect‑project director, an architectural designer, an assistant  myself.

We are specialized in project management for the extension, transformation and refurbishing of buildings. We mainly work for the mass distribution and the third sector. We independently manage our own files in complete project management or works management: we ensure the drawing up of administrative authorization files, the studies, the project leading, and the work follow-up until the perfect completion of the buildings and the conformity of work. The presence of Pascal Foucher, Architect and project director who has already been part of DHM, facilitates the procedures since he directly signs the building permits and the declarations of works. On certain files, we also benefit from the support of the technical departments at BEG Ingénierie’s head office in Orléans.

Moreover, we also often work on sites, in continuity with Orleans teams or prior to some of their major projects, providing thus a regular relationship with some of our clients.

Our main clients are Carrefour, Auchan or real estate companies, such as Unibail, Hammerson, Ceetrus or Carmila.

Our agency generally covers the whole Ile de France region, but it can sometimes extend its services beyond the Paris region to satisfy our national clients.

 

What can you tell us about the work in progress?

We are mainly involved in the transformation of commercial surfaces: for example, the Rosny 2 shopping centre project aimed at extending the Mall Place Sud and restructure the Galeries Lafayette. Four additional cells were created and refurbished on this occasion. The mall was transformed on several levels.

We are following the renovation of shopping malls such as the Palais MRM gallery in Tours or the Carmila gallery in Pré St Gervais.

Furthermore, more than 10 surface area reduction projects are currently being studied: as the pressure on land is strong in Paris, the Owners are seeking to improve their profitability and are downsizing their commercial spaces to re-rent them to other retailers. We carry out feasibility studies, budget and time schedule, and then manage the works. This is currently the case for the Bercy 2 Carrefour shopping centre.

Finally, four files are being studied for the development of stores, mainly at the foot of buildings for Carrefour.

In the tertiary sector, we are currently leading the Project Management for the fitting out of offices for a law firm. They will comprise 6 floors of  900 m² each. Work is about to begin. Other projects are to be developed on industrial sites.

after the delivery of a warehouse built on a turnkey basis by BEG Ingénierie Orléans for Leroy Merlin in Réau (77), we  extended our assistance to the client with a post-delivery mission which consisted in the mechanization of two cells. We were in charge of electricity, sprinkling, fire detection and masonry.

What are the challenges ahead for the agency?

Our ambition is still to support the retail and distribution sector but also to diversify with the development of mixed projects (housing/urban equipment/shops) and of the tertiary sector. At a time of climate emergency, we have a role to play in this urban transformation.

In the retail sector, BEG Ingénierie has always adapted to its clients : we have followed their evolution, from the building of department stores on the outskirts, to the development of shopping malls, then to the construction of warehouses, and finally to the provision of local services in the heart of the cities. Nowadays, the way of living in the city is changing, (The development of Greater Paris is at the heart of this issue), and with it, the modes of consumption and mass distribution.

BEG Ingénierie holds a real expertise in this type of projects: they require intervention with strong constraints on occupied sites:                                                                                          , complex schedules and major safety commitments.

Of course, we continue to look after our historical clients: we wish to support them in the face of these new challenges. We work very regularly on « recurring » sites, i.e. sites built by BEG Ingénierie a few years ago.

What do you like about the daily running of the agency?

It is diversity that makes my job interesting: manage the agency on a daily basis, assist clients, represent BEG Ingénierie, and of course identify new projects to develop the agency.

We have the opportunity to operate in in several sectors (distribution, logistics, services), on different type of projects, with various interventions as well.

Our team includes young people in their thirties and more employees, which t is a real strength for the agency.

My challenge consists in maintaining balance and cohesion, developing skills, so as to create a springboard for the agency’s development.

We will be soon refurbishing our offices in the same spirit of the renovation which took place at BEG’s head office in Orléans. In addition to the necessary refurbishment of our premises, we would like the agency to reflect the image of  BEG Ingénierie in Paris, and to be a relay point for it.

 

 


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