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.
THE STELLA MATUTINA MUSEUM in Saint Leu, Island of Reunion, Indian Ocean by l’atelier.architectes
March 15th, 2016 by Sumit Singhal
Article source: l’atelier.architectes
Based on the island of Réunion and in Paris, l’atelier.architectes numbers some forty collaborators, including architects, urbanists, engineers, interior designers, construction economists, and client advisory services. This experienced and multi-disciplinary team is able to adapter to all the client’s requirements and to operate under increasingly complex regulatory and economic constraints. The engineering services integrated in the office guarantee fluid exchanges, simultaneous design, and project feasibility and coherence.
l’atelier.architectes has recently delivered two new and significant projects on the island of Réunion: The rehabilitated Stella Matutina Museum in Saint-Leu and the new Cité des Arts cultural center in Saint-Denis.
This commission, for which the competition was launched by the Région Réunion in May 2010, involved for far more than a mere upgrade to standards or a simple rehabilitation. The brief called for the design of a completely new museum. This meant a total rethink of the older facility, both in terms of its content and envelope: a full rehabilitation of the buildings, newly designed museum displays, the addition of extensions and multimedia presentations
Two powerful ideas drove the project. The first was to think of the factory as the centerpiece of the collection, and the second was to place people at the heart of the museum.
An important part of the architects’ challenge consisted of making the former factory easier to grasp and navigate, notably by stripping out its cumbersome half-levels. The discrete exterior intervention, with the addition of extensions and a new copper skin, have not significantly altered the initial profile of Stella Matutina.
Some forty companies intervened on this rehabilitation construction site, comprised of 35,753 m² of total surface area (museum and the other buildings on the site), five galleries of museum displays, a temporary exhibition gallery, 600 objects of the collection exhibited, 48 multimedia systems for 100 scenarios, 60 industrial machines in situ, 25 km of wiring for video and audio networks, etc.
In addition to the architecture, the mission of l’atelier.architectes on this project ranged from general project management to the logistics of integrating the pieces of the collection. The office was also engaged to oversee the clean-up of industrial wastes on the site, as well as the restoration of the machines.