Student residence and coworking
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Project title
Student residence and coworking

Project description
235 flats for students and researchers, coworking space of 1,500 sq m
Restricted competition, finalist project

Location
ZAC in the École Polytechnique area, Lot C.2.2b, Palaiseau (France)

Client
Paris-Saclay EPPS (developer), Nexity (operator)

Project team
Lead architect: Bruno Rollet
Architect until 2016: Scape s.p.a led by partner Architect Alessandro Cambi and the studio team
Structures: VP & Green Engineering
Environmental sustainability: Franck Boutté Consultants
Landscape: Interscène

Task
Feasibility study

Chronology
2015

Design data
Gross area
8.060 sq m

Next to the future École des Mines-Telecom, the project area is in the heart of the Polytechnique district, near the future Metropolitan line 18. Towards the south the site opens onto parkland, a configuration that gives the front of the building a fine view of the wood reaching as far as the plateau. The aims of the project include continuing the link to the history of the Saclay Plateau, taking into account the neighbouring architectural projects and adjusting the relationship the building has with public space by animating it in various ways.
A horizontal line defines the point where the building meets the sky, whereas the meeting point of the building with the ground is distinguished by cavities and recesses, in which the garden sits.
The project takes form along these two lines.
As a whole the garden and the “Blue for Home” project make an "inhabited clearing": the student accommodation and “Blue office” welcome students and other people who arrive on a cyclical basis, stay for a few days or months and then leave. 
The clearing is a space to walk across or stop in, to meet others or simply have a break. It can be seen from the road and marks the edge of the building and the public space passing under the building that demarcates the entrance.
The entrance is located at the intersection of the pedestrian walkway and the road going south. This allows access to the “Blue office” and student housing.
A transparency is created from one road to the other and within the upper floors. The “Blue office” is located on the main road heading east. It represents an extraordinary opportunity to create a connection between the world of work and that of students, just like the links between the building and the district. It affords a valuable space where students and professionals are able to meet and make contact with each other, creating opportunities for recruitment, networking, careers etc.
The student rooms and the apartments face alternately onto the garden or road. Going east and west the routes of movement are regularly dotted with “green areas.”
These green areas are set around the building and identify the spaces that are shared and the spaces for collective study. Each of the green areas is given a theme and function defined, as a whole, by variations in material and colour.