Urban scale approach: in keeping with the “existing”.

Located in “Le Pouliguen” town’s historical heart, the refurbishment of the market hall was also an opportunity to redesign the public space and the adjoining sidestreets and alleyways. Due to its food market activities and shops nearby, the site operates as a public square, a gathering space during market days, a transition space and, from an urban morphological point of view, a crossing point for streets and alleys of the town centre.

Studio name :Berranger et Vincent architects
Design team : Berranger et Vincent architects
Area : 300m² NIA
Year : 2012
Location : Le Pouliguen, France
Client :  Pouliguen Town Hall
Photography Credits : Stéphane Chalmeau, Berranger et Vincent architects
Other Credits : Berranger et Vincent architects

Pouliguen Hall By Berranger et Vincent Architectes - Sheet2
©Stéphane Chalmeau, Berranger et Vincent architects

Settled in the middle of this space, the relatively imposing building occupies most of the available room three-dimensionally.

Indeed, its ground external area equals more than a third of the total available space and as for its elevations, the roof is on average as high as the surrounding buildings.

Thus, this “slated volume”, imposing compared to the place’s scale, worked as a ‘screen’. It allowed no visibility from a façade to another, and only offered a narrow field of vision to onlookers. As for the inhabitants of the surrounding buildings, the sight of the old market hall’s roof reduced all perspectives, blocking all views towards the town.

Pouliguen Hall By Berranger et Vincent Architectes - Sheet3
©Stéphane Chalmeau, Berranger et Vincent architects

Architectural approach

The project’s idea was to find a clear link with the town and the market square by working on the readability of the building.  Therefore the proposed approach sought to ‘undress’ the roof, remove the slates and the timber sheathing boards. Once removed, we were left with exposed structural elements such as the wooden oak trusses and pine columns, parts of the main components of the framework.

The next idea was then to maintain the structure visible to the public, regain transparency, lightness (after cleaning the structure) of see-through elements to keep the materiality of the building and especially to ‘lighten’ its presence.

As a response, we proposed large, laminated glass panels giving at last the possibility of looking through the building with new perspectives, not only from the neighbouring houses but also across the market square and adjacent streets at pedestrian level. This move also allows to bring natural light into the building formerly lit with artificial lighting also during the day.

Pouliguen Hall By Berranger et Vincent Architectes - Sheet6
©Stéphane Chalmeau, Berranger et Vincent architects

Lighting design

Our proposal highlights the evening and the morning, like a small lantern. The project offers a bright atmosphere diffused through a system of fluorescent Waldmann lights, suspended from the timber frame by steel cables. A second set of Waldmann lights is installed around the roof eaves to illuminate traders’ stalls and follow the accessibility regulations on access paths.

Ultimately, more than bringing the structure up to standards, this Lantern project renews an urban and architectural coherence.

Pouliguen Hall By Berranger et Vincent Architectes - Sheet7
©Stéphane Chalmeau, Berranger et Vincent architects

Our proposal highlights the evening and the morning, like a small lantern. The project offers a bright atmosphere diffused throught a system of fluorescent Waldmann lights suspended from the timber frame by steel cables. A second set of Waldmann lights is installed around the roof eaves to illuminate traders’ stalls and follow the accessibility regulations on access paths. Ultimately, more than bringing the structure up to standards, this Lantern project renews an urban and architectural coherence.

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