News

Leopold Views, to be inaugurated this autumn

Leopold Views aims at pertinently converting an office building into a residential ensemble. The principal quandary here therefore is the squaring of the well-being of the future diverse occupants of the tower with living in what was essentially dry and dull work space. To achieve this, each interior area benefits from a wood-decked terrace which acts as a fluid transition between inside and out, so providing residents with a qualified relationship with their environment not often experienced in a tower. Owing to the modular perforated sliding panels fitted to each terrace, the occupants gain the novel freedom to create their degree of privacy at any given moment. A great deal of attention has been paid to light filled common spaces which stimulate natural interactions for all, including ground floor shops, spaces for professional activities, a large bicycle zone, as well as common 13th floor rooftop terraces and lounge for get-togethers available to all residents. The quality of this common qualified space is essential to the sustainability of the project. Developed for client Matexi, its first occupants are due to move in by the end of the year. The hope at architectesassoc is to exemplify how we can successfully shift from obsolete to innovative, from isolated to connected, and equally from bland to bold within a standard budget. From this point of view, conversion of office space into residential is a privileged road to pursue in order to respond to sustainability goals and higher demands for housing. Indeed, office construction offers the advantage of higher floor-to-ceiling dimensions greatly increasing the quality of the lived experience and the ease with which techniques fit for housing are integrated. In addition, avoiding demolition/reconstruction and engaging in upcycling remain important factors of sustainability as well as part of environmentally sensitive responses considered globally.

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JARDIN D'UNION DUE IN AUTUMN

163 new homes will be finished here by autumn, complete with street-level shops and offices, a day-care centre, and communal amenities. Facade details are now apparent  and notably white metal work contrasting with grey brick, while interior finishes progress. The busy boulevard relates with the sloped gardens behind via two generous double-height porches strategically positioned to create effective permeability between front and back. These passageways lead to a soon-finished semi-public square of more intimate character over-looking existing terraced homes on the opposite railway bank. Designed for play and informal encounters, the low-lying volumes defining its perimeter and their careful positioning together allow for maximum sunlight here during most of the day. Already partially occupied, the broad panoply of dwelling types and sizes will hopefully push occupant diversity, while division into digestible sub-parts should push appropriation.

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CANAL DISTRICT DONE

Developed by client Besix Red, CANAL DISTRICT has reached completion. Fašades in light-coloured plissé aluminium are finished, with glazed street-entrances animating the ground floor and extending all the way back to court-side. Here dark-toned balconies cantilevered 3m out are all in place, carefully arranged to ensure maximum privacy for all occupants. A double-height porch precisely positioned on the rue Notre-Dame du Soleil's fold now bears its bright fuchsia ceiling, clearly marking the passageway between urban bustle and secured inner-block calm. Landscaping just completed will provide much needed greenery, defining shared play space and private areas. Looking up, a gently sloped skyline punctuated by a hop-scotch of rooftop terraces echoes the great variety of existing surroundings, characterised by a tight-knit kaleidoscope of built forms. The 98 flat project also includes a day-care centre and other communal amenities, aiming to bring added value to the neighbourhood.

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