CHAVANNE

(Community hall and Primary school; Chavanne-des-bois, Switzerland; competition; 2010; collaboration with Christophe Fouad and ARUP)

Aiming at generating a dense and mixed-use new centrality within the suburban tissue of Chavannes-des-Bois, and incorporating a pre-existing underground bunker, the three buildings (community hall, primary school and residential-commercial) frame a strategically dimensioned public space that includes pedestrian paths, three distinct ambiences and a tree linings. The main buildings (community hall and school) are characterised by a welcoming architecture with their ground floors recessed and large openings. The first floor is more enclosed in order to secure privacy to the users while still allowing open views and high levels of natural illumination. The robust construction in massive concrete guarantees thermal comfort, the tone of the concrete varies between both buildings. The overall landscaping creates smooth transitions and subtle spatial filters between areas of different use.