2006 Skyscraper Competition
Ratsimiebo Noely, Bommier Pacome, Bruter Jonathan
Let us think of a city that is constrained by a complex urban structure. An ordered grid, the compulsory maximal height and density of the imposed vellums, as well as the need for balanced perspectives and visual openings. Every new modification of the city must abide by a strict global composition. The city is also centralized, its urban layers are superimposed, add to each other, organize and stabilize disparities and dis-equilibria. The city can be seen as an ecosystem made of built components, equipments, infrastructures, sport fields, empty spaces, squares, parks, and gardens. The site and placement of each of them is conditioned by a global equilibrium which allows every single element to exist on its own, as well as within a global system. It is a balanced composition.
Now, let us think of this city as a finished ensemble, in which urban logic might be enriched by a new, unexpected, dimension. What if its current equilibrium is not complete, but, instead, a living body, which could be enriched and even improved by the addition of a new dimension? What if this new dimension is a vibration that would allow the whole city to live and function differently?. New levels of connection, new links within a city, a city that did not think it had any room for them. This role would by played by high buildings, which would inject a density of life in areas that were thought to be complete: in-between a courtyard and a street, amidst towers and offices, topping an empty tooth, to give a meaning to a district that used to lack it.
Each tower is conceived as a new complex object. Rich in links, connections, public and private spaces, they are thought of as jigsaws of habitation spaces, working quarters, and areas of life and human interaction. Each element finds its place in a network of pillars and develops its own specific architectural vocabulary. The apartments are inserted like cabins on groups of pillars. The habitation areas spread over a height of 17 metres. Within the volume of the building, plateaus of 5.25m x 7.60m are superimposed, creating duplex and triplex apartments as well as aerial gardens. This mixture of lodgings, gardens, and axes of circulation create a complex system of public and private spaces, full and empty elements, where transparencies open, focus, and direct the views within the tower and to the outside.
Perched high, apartments are linked by open air corridors, ‘cursives’ and ramps, which reach several points in the volume of the building via platforms of distribution. Office blocks are hubs within the vertical structure of the tower. They are surrounded by technical floors and come as overhanging structures, creating breaks in the organization of the building. These blocks are made of five plateaus of about 350 square metres. These stages can be separated, open, or broken in smaller parts depending on the space needs of the companies that will use them. This means that a company that needs two or more levels can open an underpass or mezzanine to fulfil their needs. The overhanging structures of these boxes create empty spaces within the pillars, which serve as common spaces for the surrounding offices.