© David Romero-Uzeda

Simone Veil’s group of schools in Colombes // Dominique Coulon & Associés

Colombes, France

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The ‘Simone Veil’ group of schools forms a structural element in the urban composition of the new eco-neighbourhood. It is tightly embedded in the dense urban fabric, opposite a park and straddling the maintenance workshops for the new tram line. The building is on three levels. The plot of land is small, and the roof areas are used to house the elementary school’s classrooms and educational gardens.

© Eugeni Pons

© Eugeni Pons

© Eugeni Pons

© Eugeni Pons

The group also includes a sports hall, a canteen, a library, and out-of-school childcare facilities. The building is very thick; the hollows scooped out of the facades serve as facets, attracting the light and reflecting it back. Many of the traffic routes are lateralised, making them varied and bright. A number of patios irrigate the heart of the building, bringing natural light into its thickness.

© Eugeni Pons

© Eugeni Pons

© Eugeni Pons

© Eugeni Pons

Internal transparencies add extra richness to traffic routes. On the town side, the building offers a rustic texture. Strips of untreated wood (with the bark left on) emphasise the corresponding roughness. The ground floor has the advantage of transparency through the covered courtyard, offering a glimpse of the multi-coloured playground, which is intended to be a very autonomous and artificial universe.

© Guillaume Wittmann

© Guillaume Wittmann

© Eugeni Pons

© Eugeni Pons

The bright colours transform the space, expanding it to create a place for educational stimulation. This project avoids all form of repetition. The light, the materials used, and the traffic routes create micro-events. These fragments come together in a joyful chaos.

© Guillaume Wittmann

© Guillaume Wittmann

© Eugeni Pons

© Eugeni Pons

Client : Ville de ColombesArchitect : Dominique Coulon & associésArchitects : Dominique Coulon, Olivier NicollasArchitects assistants : Guillaume Wittmann, Emilie Brichard, Jean Scherer, David Romero-UzedaEngineers and consultants :Structural Engineer : Batiserf IngénierieElectrical Engineer : BET G.JostMechanical Plumbing Engineer : Solares BauenCost Estimator : E3 économieAcoustics : Euro Sound ProjectErgonomist : Defacto Kitchen expert : EcotralLandscape : Bruno KublerProgram :Elementary school12 classrooms / Nursery school 9 classrooms / CLSH Nursery / CLSH Elementary / Dinning room / Sports hallAddress : 3 rue Marguerite Yourcenar, 92700 Colombes / GPS location : 48.914625, 2.226837 Surface : 7600m2 Budget : 16 300 000 € H.TSchedule : Competition : december 2010Plans and technical phases : from march 2011 to july 2012Construction : from january 2013 to august 2015Construction companies : Structure, Earthworks, water proofing roofing, elevator, metal works : SNRBFacades : SEE SIMEONIExterior joinery : HUNSINGERInterior joinery : MILLETWood floors : PRODESIGNHeating, ventilation, plombing : BRUNIERElectricity : REZZAPhotovoltaic systems : SOLSTYCEPhotography : Eugeni Pons, Guillaume Wittmann, David Romero-Uzeda.

© David Romero-Uzeda

© David Romero-Uzeda

© Eugeni Pons

© Eugeni Pons

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