ENS cachan paris-saclay selects renzo piano for campus project
all images courtesy of renzo piano building workshop / ENS cachan paris-saclay
the ENS cachan paris-saclay in france has selected renzo piano building workshop — from five other shortlisted firms (JLCG arquitectos / GM – guervilly maffret; lacaton and vassal / druot architecture; atelier lion / marc mimram / ignacio prego/; and michel rémon group / jacques ripault) — to develop a 64,000 square meter building as part of its campus project.
a garden sits at the heart of the scheme
the volumes are positioned along the perimeter of the premises, arranged vis-à-vis, forming a rectangular organization which features a garden at its heart; in which more than one hectare of surrounding green space defines the readability of the structures. the plan revolves around several architectural focal points which speak of the school’s focus on science, technology and humanities — a pluralist design approach that accommodates the varying needs of the educational facility, as well as reflecting the diverse research and knowledge accumulated within the confines of its walls. these include a completely transparent south facing façade that allows passersby to look in and view the various on-goings and programs within: a cafeteria, public restaurant, conference, media and learning center; and rounded volumes housing the departments of science, engineering, humanities and social sciences positioned on opposite ends of the site that connect and balance out the strict linear quality of the buildings that run along the length of the property.
aerial view of the campus which is designed in a vis-à-vis arrangement
in developing the concept, piano focused on realizing a campus which emphasizes structural performance and functionality. this is evidenced in the aforementioned vis-à-vis which offers a convenient network of pathways that make it easy to navigate between the associated structures. the façade construction is primarily made of large ‘gates’ which allow for a flexible and semi-transparent configuration of classrooms, offices and laboratories. in addition, piano’s ENS cachan paris-saclay campus also functions as a dynamic ecosystem reducing its resource requirements. this is achieved through a compact establishment whose openness and transparency allows for solar gain for naturally heating the interior, green roofs and balconies, the utilization of a passive cooling system, recovery and storm water management, alongside the bio climatic garden.
the new ENS cachan paris-saclay campus is set for completion in 2018.
site diagram indication circulation flows
up close of the site plan