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Susan Smith
Susan Smith
Susan Smith has worked as an editor and writer in the technology industry for over 16 years. As an editor she has been responsible for the launch of a number of technology trade publications, both in print and online. Currently, Susan is the Editor of GISCafe and AECCafe, as well as those sites’ … More »

“GREEN WAVE” – Mobilization Swimming Pool in Royat, France

February 4th, 2011 by Susan Smith


In the heart of the water city of Royat, at the confluence of the Tiretaine and Liaboux rivers, Vincent Callebaut Architectures’ extension project is a dynamic response to Royat city’s desire to build a mobilization swimming pool represented by a very attractive and contemporary architecture designed specifically for patients at therapeutic spas. 

Perspective from Avenue Royat

Perspective from Avenue Royat

PROGRAM: “Construction of a mobilization swimming-pool in the thermal centre of Royat”


IN ASSOCIATION WITH: Frederic Magnien Architect


CLIENT: Commune de Royat, Ophis, Puy-de-Dôme

LOCATION: Royat, France

SIZE: 550 m²

COST: 2.200.000,00 € HT

PERSPECTIVES: Marco Conti Sikic

STATUS: In progress




By addressing the need for pools for cardio-arterial and rheumatologic care, Vincent Callebaut Architectures architecture proposes the construction of a “planted wave” that covers the pool hall under its curve. The ecological wave projects its curve towards the avenue de Royat and introduces a new green setting,  laid out in the urban Northern façade of the spa site. By meeting the needs of the programme as precisely as possible, the project emphasizes three major themes as detailed below : the urban presence, the welfare of the patients and the environmental quality. 


Site plan

Site plan

From the avenue de Royat, the project demonstrates a strong architectural presence leading the slightly austere line of the mineral façade laid out in bar codes of extensions dating from the sixties to the eighties. The “green wave” takes into account all the constraints of the site and presents a compact made-to-measure volumetry on stilts of the scratched surrounding frame. Actually, the arched architecture of the pool hall sets up against the bank of the main building, lining up along the fire lane to the laundry and the workshops located below.    





Axonometric view - swimming pools

Axonometric view - swimming pools

At the east of the parcel near the source, the volume of the hall ends at the implantation limit. But, in order to unify the architectures of the site, the roof stretches and becomes convertible, creating a whole height space and therefore is easily reachable from the water source “AURALINE” drilling head. The existing façade becomes an interior wooden wall studded with portholes and horizontal bays behind which the incoming and outgoing changing rooms are laid out. Two footbridges offer access to these changing rooms, with a free space laid out between the technical floor of the extension and the building to let the natural light penetrate on the 0-level of the current building by a glazed floor. 


Axonometric view - green roof

Axonometric view - green roof



The “green wave” project emulates a natural environment on the avenue de Royat. The planted roof ensures great acoustic and thermal comfort inside the hall. This bioclimatic cushion will reduce the energetic expenditure by accumulating the heat in winter and by ventilating the hall naturally in summer. At the bottom of the Puy de Gravenoire the micro landscape embraces the spa. Under this green wave, the fountain pool and the mobilization pool have a circular shape. The patients have a view of their physiotherapists’ locations equidistant from everyone in the centre of the pools.



                    © Vincent Callebaut Architectures –



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