Université Paris-Sorbonne, Clignancourt Centre

Paris / France / 2013

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The University of Paris IV-Sorbonne's Clignancourt Centre was built in 1968 on a former military site located between Boulevard Ney and the Paris Beltway, in the city's 18th arrondissement. Its renovation, begun in 2009, is part of the redevelopment of the entire Clignancourt neighbourhood.

Three areas in the Clignancourt Centre are open the general public: the library, the gymnasium and the auditorium. These three elements provide unity to the whole and are directly visible from the road; each has a strong, recognisable identity.

Two imposing structures frame the site to the North and West: the OPAC housing block and the SAGI university accommodation which block views and sunlight, but serve as an acoustic screen against the Beltway. To the East, however, the site is completely open to the vast Poissonniers sports grounds and is bordered to the South by the quiet, residential Rue F. De Croiset.
In this dense and developing environment, the centre was rebuilt around a central garden with four distinct volumes serving four different functions. The library, the gymnasium and the auditorium face the city and make up the Centre's main façade, while to the East the monumental façade of the teaching wing marks the edge of the site.

The raised volume of the main auditorium is accessed through a courtyard, the threshold between road and Centre, which provides a visual connection to the interior through the withdrawn, glass-panelled entry hall.
On the Rue F. De Croiset, the library and the gymnasium are superimposed, while the teaching wing's monumental façade marks the Centre out on a city-wide scale and makes it visible from the Beltway.

A SINGLE, CONTEMPORARY MATERIAL

The choice of alveolar polycarbonate as the only material establishes the Centre’s contemporary identity.

Colours are used to identify each of these volumes by function. The choice of colours reference university symbolism: daffodil yellow , traditionally associated with the arts, literature and philosophy, is used for the library’s envelope, but also links the different buildings through lines and ribbons which echo throughout the volumes. The colour gold emphasizes the auditorium's envelope, marking it out as the Centre’s flagship building, but also indicating the entrance to the site.
The light grey and opalescent of the teaching wing and gymnasium are a counterpoint to these strong colours.


MULTIMEDIA LIBRARY – MARNE-CHANTEREINE NETWORK CENTRE, CHELLES (77)
Atelier Novembre Architecture - Jacques Pajot and Marc Iseppi – have delivered the Chelles Multimedia Library, in the Paris area.

Contractor: The Marne et Chantereine municipal authority
Project management : Atelier Novembre (architect), cabinet Lamoureux (acoustics), Scénarchie (scenography), Neveux &Rouyer (landscape designer), ISATEG/GRONTMIJ (technical consultants), Gaudin ingénierie (HQE), Christine Mathieu - L'Epicerie (signage)
Surface area: 3,500 sq. m
Cost: € 9.3 M before tax
due: June 2013
 
The Chelles multimedia library was borne of a political ambition: to create a public structure in harmony with the current cultural centre, designed for the diverse community of Marne-Chantereine. Atelier Novembre { Jacques Pajot and Marc Iseppi } have given body to this ambition in a powerful statement from an urban, landscape design and functional perspective.

URBAN AND LANDSCAPE DESIGN
 
Because it enters into a conversation with the current cultural centre, the multimedia library acts as a powerful anchor to the cultural pole, at the crossroads between different urban fabrics. It was designed by the Atelier Novembre to integrate the city and the surrounding landscape: linearity to the West and South, fragmentation to the East. The multimedia library is supported by existing structures: the cultural centre, but also the lines drawn by roads or trees.
There is a continuity between the multimedia library entry hall and that of the cultural centre. The two volumes are lined up, ordered together to enable functional connections between the two sites. The Cultural Centre’s Eastern facade, which can be seen from the multimedia library, has been renovated by Atelier Novembre to provide aesthetic consistency between the two buildings.
The pedestrian areas, planted with Japanese pagoda trees, Scots pines, oaks and beeches, serve as gates to the island and guide visitors to the doors of the cultural sites. The outside areas provide spaces for local residents to make their own, to rest and enjoy the linear gardens.

FUNCTIONAL LAYOUT OF THE MULTIMEDIA LIBRARY
 
The multimedia library is made up of reading rooms, divided into two main poles and spread over two levels, and a 230 seat auditorium. These two entities can be accessed through the multimedia library hall.
The “U" design provides double access: the reading areas open out either onto the city or the inner courtyard which is created by this shape.
The "free platforms" design for the reading rooms creates great freedom to walk around the centre and help to distinguish the different spaces. These successions of spaces bring with them variations in lighting and openings, alternating window frames with large bay windows, lattices and skylights.

An emphasis is given to natural light throughout the building.
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    The University of Paris IV-Sorbonne's Clignancourt Centre was built in 1968 on a former military site located between Boulevard Ney and the Paris Beltway, in the city's 18th arrondissement. Its renovation, begun in 2009, is part of the redevelopment of the entire Clignancourt neighbourhood.Three areas in the Clignancourt Centre are open the general public: the library, the gymnasium and the auditorium. These three elements provide unity to the whole and are directly visible from the road; each...

    Project details
    • Year 2013
    • Work finished in 2013
    • Client The Marne et Chantereine municipal authority
    • Status Completed works
    • Type Colleges & Universities / Research Centres/Labs
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