- Program:24 Housing Units and a 125-room temporary accommodation residence
- Location:ZAC Confluences – Lyon, France
- Client:HMF Rhône – Alpes
- Cost:€ 1,7 M excl. VAT
- Surface:5 870 m²
Lyon Confluence is an example of urban development that has gained widespread acceptance, in which both private and public interests are serving the city, and architecture is conceived in terms of urban living concerns. Its success has been due as much to planning as dialogue, and to the open-mindedness of its different actors. Block H had to take part in this process, within a complex urban dynamic seeking to exploit the peninsula’s strategic position, modify the district’s vocation and enhance the rivers and landscape. The project is set in the heart of a heterogeneous context and comprises two distinct entities: 24 housing units in R+9 to the west of the plot, and a temporary accommodation residence in R+6 to the east. The first stage consisted in ‘sculpting’ the volume in order to exploit its urban potential and intrinsic spatial qualities. We began our study with a precise analysis of contextual interactions and the plot’s sun exposure. The façade on place Denuzière is divided into different volumes of varying heights to allow light into the heart of the block. Its staggered outline, reminiscent of the famous Halle Tony Garnier, also creates a centralisation of perspective, and echoes the classical composition of the squares that is part of the vocabulary of the city’s public spaces.Over and above functional concerns, the question was not to construct a building but rather to articulate a new urban space combining the public and private, verticality and horizontality, and to respond fully to the expectations and needs of a population. The attractiveness and success of our project depends on the alchemy between its volumetry and its integration into a complex urban project, but also the delicate balances between the immediate district and the broader environment of the city. The project’s ambition is to ‘assemble old and new’, to encourage a feeling of cohesion between different historical stratifications through materiality and the project’s vocabulary itself. The project’s conception is therefore based on the regularity, clarity of language and simplicity of the envelope. The building expresses its contemporary identity through the composition’s principal element, the window. This choice corresponds first of all to a programmatic need: the rooms in the residences follow a regular grid and require two windows for optimum luminosity. And transposing this logic onto the composition of the apartments, they benefit from multiple views and enable the exploitation of the micro-urban situations defined above. The conception of the window was therefore crucial if it were to fully respond to diverse needs. Depending on orientation and use, the exterior fittings are positioned either on the bare prefabricated concrete, or set back from it, so that the sides of the frame can be used as shutters to shield the sun. Yet behind this regularity hides a world to be discovered. The ceilings of rooms visible from the street and the loggias of the apartments enliven the regularity of the windows, and seen from a distance the building expresses itself from the interior like a colour chart. The building’s morphology is compact (compactness index: 1), which is crucial for energy management since it reduces the envelope’s heat loss surfaces and increases the project’s economy by reducing the dimensions of the facades. The building’s compactness enables the facades to be glazed above the thermal standard (glazed surfaces/ façade surface = 20%). This strategy of increasing façade openings was accompanied by a protection and occultation strategy: the windows open onto balconies/terraces regulating sunlight, allowing the winter sun to penetrate and preventing the high summer sun from overheating the interior.