Tech n’Start
Project title
Tech n’Start, the heart of transformation

Project description
Construction of a building for offices, production, university and commercial activities in Bordeaux.
Restricted competition, finalist project.

Bordeaux (France)

GA Promotion

Project team
Investor: Foncière Inea
General contractors: AGC – Groupe Cassous
Architect: IT’S
Commercial real estate: Colliers
Developer: GA Entreprise
Facilities: Omega
Consultancy and workspace planning: Colliers
Roads and infrastructure/ water resources law: Iris Conseil
Landscape: Volga
Urban farming – algae production: Urban Algae
Mobility dynamics: Qucit
Biodiversity: Biogeco

Preliminary Design


Design data

Gross area
18.750 sqm

Energy performance
Label R2S-Ready2Services.
Low-carbon building (label E+C-)

23.156.500 €

All the most important recent innovations have come from the hybridization of different areas of knowledge. To design somewhere for innovation means creating a place that facilitates meetings between people, for exchange and dialogue.
This is what we had in mind for the Tech n’Start project. First and foremost we designed a meeting place.
A place that is not only dedicated to the people who work there, but can also be a point of reference for the entire ecosystem that characterises the area. A federative place.
A building whose architecture and image evoke this role.
The building is shaped like a star, with points extending towards the landscape and the new urban developments, constructing a relationship with them that in each case is diverse and specific. While everyone’s living and meeting spaces converge at the centre in the agora.
A building that constitutes a landmark in an area where the terrain is almost entirely horizontal, dotted with buildings that are excessively homogenous. A symbolic building that draws the eye, with an aesthetic that evokes the world of innovation: the aerospatial, robotic and digital world.
And yet it is just one building, comprising many!
This star shape not only unites the functions that it contains but also the buildings that will rise alongside; as a place of reference; a pole of attraction with a clear identity.
A building that the pedestrian recognises while walking along Boulevard Technologique much like the passenger in an aeroplane touching down at Mérignac.
The blueprint, besides emanating from a design choice, transmits a strong link with the surrounding landscape. The arrangement of “starpoints” reduces the impact on the existing trees to a minimum and on one side allows the building to extend towards the wooded area, framing, respecting and highlighting it; extending on the other towards Boulevard Tecnologique to create a new, articulated and dynamic urban side. The arms of the building that project towards the road set up a marked relationship with Tranche 2, and Taramaq’s future construction, with Lulu dans la Prairie and the commercial area, giving passers-by a kinetic idea of the construction, which is always different, whichever way you look at it. On this side, the building’s three levels afford ascoustic protection for the woodland, while the porous aspect to the ground floor guarantees visual and pedestrian continuity within the lot.
A series of elements gravitate around the main building: the carpark, Lulu dans la Prairie, the group of shops, the open air ‘bird’ cage and the Tranche 2 buildings.
As in a constellation, each element has its own autonomy and is dependent on the others at the same time.
To the south is the Lulu dans la Prairie building and the shopping area.
The difference in height of the various flights of steps to enter the buildings creates an articulated and harmonious system.
All these elements stand out from the background of a marvelous natural landscape that is almost completely preserved. Whereas towards Boulevard Tecnologique the environment is more mineral, to match the urben function of that side of the lot and create continuity with the Taramaq project.
The Tranche 2 buildings are arranged as a progression of the star system. Their position with respect to the road was chosen to give passers-by a kinetic feeling when looking at the buildings.
The ‘pointed arms’ layout of the main building, and the use of strip windows and horizontal sunshades are designed to allow the best possible natural light to enter the workspaces as well as an exceptional view of nature. The buildings are clad in new generation materials that come from the aerospace and automobile industries, such as aluminium, used with various finishes (opaque, brushed and mirrored), and glass, creating a strong relationship of reflections and trasnparencies with the surrounding nature.
A warmer material such as wood is used to clad Lulu dans la Prairie and the line of shops.
The facades of the main building are wooden in structure. Both materials and technology allow for a more rapid construction process and a lowering of carbon emissions.