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.
Zac Claude Bernard in Paris, France by Dietmar Feichtinger Architectes
June 21st, 2012 by Sumit Singhal
Article source: Dietmar Feichtinger Architectes
The building is part of a recently developed area in the North of Paris (19th district). The main façade – south – faces an urban boulevard – Boulevard Mac Donald. The new tram way under construction will serve the area in a few months. Next to the housing, a school group, offices and facilities have been built.
The main volume of the housing is 10 stories high and measures 45 x 32 m. A small patio lights up naturally the center. Shops situated on the ground floor and offices on the 1st floor complete the building. All apartments are double oriented and a generously outdoor space – balcony, roof, terrace or loggia – are provided for each apartment. The outdoor spaces enlarge naturally the living rooms and dining area. The loggias are about 10 m2; their dimension allows the comfortable placement of a table.
The apartments are laid out on a grid of 3m20 and offer a multitude of types from studios to large 4/5 room apartments. One of the major topics has been the possible evolution by combining the apartments and adapting them to new situations over generations. The plan, composed of modules allows to reorganize and to resize the apartments.
A 30cm low parapet allows vertical openings and assures comfortable natural light in all rooms. Solar panels on the roof provide hot water. A two stories underground parking contains 78 places, storage rooms and a large department for cycles.
The building is well insulated on the outside face of the facade. The top skin is made of polycarbonate cellular panels of three different degrees of transparency. (Transparent, translucent, opaque). The skin provides a depth (profoundness) to the facade by its transparency, while a film behind the panels uniforms the background. Reflected sunlight gives the building it’s special flair. The facade of the base of the building (shops and offices) is composed by glass and concrete panels.
Workshops with an open height of 5 meters are situated in the courtyard facing the main building. A delivery area for small trucks is provided. The project proposes a mix of functions in a very high density.
The Simone de Beauvoir footbridge was designed by Dietmar Feichtinger.We talk with an architect who is as attentive to the natural as he is to the urban environment.
He designed the Simone de Beauvoir footbridge, won the European competition for the Mont Saint Michel pedestrian causeway bridge and was responsible for the footbridges at La Défense and over the Rhine, but Dietmar Feichtinger does not consider himself a bridge specialist. “I don’t like the term specialist. Our work covers a hospital, universities, office buildings, toll plazas and cinemas as well as bridges.” He does not prefer horizontal to vertical lines and adds that he is careful never to repeat himself. “I don’t to get into the habit of designing only office buildings, only bridges or anything else. Habit kills creativity.” Every location calls for its own project. Treating every projectas a new one fitting into a specific location is a good way of avoiding routine. This involves seeking a new solution every time, endeavoring to be highly modern, highly contemporary and above all avoiding stylistic precepts.
Everywhere – if it’s in Paris or the Mont Saint Michel Bay – Dietmar Feichtinger focuses primarily on fitting his projects into their setting. This, he strongly believes, is the fundamental of architecture, a guiding principle rather than an obstacle, and he pays close attention to the structure of his work.“The bones of the building, that is what every architect should be interested in.” His bridges are, in that sense, a stylistic exercise: “This is all-revealing architecture, you can conceal nothing. It is the basic. principles that make the project.”
Dietmar Feichtinger a native of Austria, studied architecture at the Technical University of Graz. He moved to Paris in 1989 and established Dietmar Feichtinger Architectes in 1993. With a thirty of employees between Paris and Vienna the team operates mainly in Europe. DFA has built a strong reputation for its inventive structures and its investigative approach to design. Its work links both architecture and engineering whilst exploring the dynamic between these two disciplines. In a constant strive DFA is looking for integration environmental and sustainable development, in a elegant and sensitive architecture, respectful of nature and humans. Dietmar Feichtinger Architectes is internationally honored with architecture awards and publications for excellence in design and their built projects. www.feichtingerarchitectes.com
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