the ground / the sky
Due to its history, the landscape of the Malakoff district presents an irregular urban structure, marked in particular by the curved outline of the various railway infrastructures and the recent Boulevard de Berlin. The site, located at an intersection between discordant geometries, therefore calls for a detailed strategy : On the ground, supporting the pedestrian and helping to structure the public space ; higher up, forging a less direct relationship with the outline of the plot by proposing a simple, abstract geometric figure which joins in the ballet of the surrounding edifices.
The base, anchored in the topography of the site, houses the communal developments, and its planted roof provides a garden level at the height of the neighbouring railway. The architecture of this lower stratum, structured by a network of beams and posts in raw concrete, borrows from the vocabulary of neighbouring structures, and makes optimal use of transparencies between the residence’s collective areas and the public spaces.
the city sky
The primary volume of the residence houses the bedrooms, organised in two dissymmetrical bays around a central corridor. This particularly effective organisation makes it possible to minimise the volume of the building and to give all rooms unobstructed views and sunlight, with most of them enjoying views over the landscape of the Petite Amazonie park. The differentiated treatment of the facades reflects this dissymmetry, while also offering a unitary reading of the building. The horizontal stratification is marked by protruding slab edges and window-basement bands clad with white enamelled glass panels.
The facade looking onto the Boulevard is designed as a giant screen ; apart from the window-basement bands, this facade is entirely glazed and fitted with internal blackout curtains, enhancing the reflective nature of the glazed surfaces regardless of occupation of the dwellings. The abstraction of this core building avoids any overly direct references to the surrounding edifices, and makes optimal use of a smooth and fluent material expression in which transparencies and opacities form a weave set in motion by its inhabitants, thus turning to advantage the singular nature and specific function of a student residence.