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Sumit Singhal
Sumit Singhal
Sumit Singhal loves modern architecture. He comes from a family of builders who have built more than 20 projects in the last ten years near Delhi in India. He has recently started writing about the architectural projects that catch his imagination.

Digue Dondaines Nursery in Lille, France by Atelier 9.81

November 27th, 2011 by Sumit Singhal

Article source: Atelier 9.81

This project for a nursery is part of Euralille’s greater project, and more particularly in the area of the islet of St. Maurice, built on a section of the De Geyter urban project.

It enhances a pedestrian area comprise varied spaces, crossing the urban project. Included in a 100-dwelling operation, the nursery is located on the ground floor, and confirms its community-building role, on the outskirt of the Place aux Érables.

Exterior View ((c)Atelier 9.81)

  • Architect: Atelier 9.81
  • Name of Project: Digue Dondaines Nursery
  • Location: Lille, France
  • Surface project: 275 m² useful surface
  • Budget: 527,000 € (excluding taxes)
  • Planning: Delivery – May 2010

Exterior View ((c)Atelier 9.81)

  • Prime contractor:
    • Architects and urban planners: Atelier 9.81
    • Architects: Geoffrey Galand & Cédric Michel
    • Project design supervisor: Virginie Courouble
    • Project execution supervisor: Simon Delloue
    • BE generalist: PROJEX
    • Graphic designers: Corpus Studio
  • Project owner: City of Lille
  • Information project: Execution of a 20-cradle nursery on the ground floor of an apartment building, Park of the Dondaines mixed-development zone, Euralille, BBC level (BBC = Low-consumption building)


Interior View ((c)Atelier 9.81)

In this fashion, the project was required to deal with a challenge: how to offer a luminous space, widely open onto the city, while simultaneously preserving the privacy required for its resident. A fully-glassed facade was created, a support which is both informative and playful, allowing passers-by to guess rather than see the inside of the nursery.

Once this duality has been satisfactorily addressed, the volume thus inserted is distorted, “digging in”, so to speak, to smooth out the rough edges of the situation that was encountered (level differences, existing structure, liquid network, etc.)

(c)Atelier 9.81

These movements are put to good use, livening up the space both visually and spatially through specific work done to the ceiling: white multi-sized disks blend in with the height differences, creating an astonishing landscape which fosters the children’s stimulation. These waves are also encountered at floor level, through the use of a flexible resin following a series of gentle curves, inviting various uses.

In this manner, the nursery offers graceful, playful spaces which flow between cocoon-like closed areas such as the sleeping quarters, the kitchen or the milk-formula room.


Interior View ((c)Atelier 9.81)

The equipment meets the city’s expectations regarding power-requirement reductions, i.e. a 50kwh/m²/yr consumption goal.

The nature of the building led the project owner to consider 4 priority HEQ themes: these are energy, decreased water consumptions, durability, and waste management.


Interior View ((c)Atelier 9.81)

Interior View ((c)Atelier 9.81)

Interior View ((c)Atelier 9.81)

Model ((c)Atelier 9.81)

Concept ((c)Atelier 9.81)

Model ((c)Atelier 9.81)

Site ((c)Atelier 9.81)

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