The Center in Paris Project will create a new hub for scholarship and cultural exchange in Paris’ rapidly-developing 13th arrondissement. Comprising an academic center for the University of Chicago and a mixed-use residential building, the project will bring vitality to its neighborhood with biodiverse green spaces and an architecture that weaves the block—both physically and intellectually—into the fabric of the city.
To support a lively dialogue between the University and greater communities, spaces shared with the public are strategically located and connected to the outdoors to invite mixing. University spaces are organized into a vertical campus whose classrooms wrap around a central, daylit interior that culminates in a biodiverse roof garden. Public art as well as a visual and material interplay between the buildings evoke the warp and weft of a textile. Lush outdoor green spaces atop and between the structures provide places for socializing, study, and rest as well as habitat for urban wildlife.
In alignment with the ambitious environmental standards of the City of Paris and SEMAPA, the design minimizes carbon footprint while optimizing energy performance. Its combination of active and passive strategies includes the use of locally-sourced and sustainably-harvested materials.
The academic building’s vertically-articulated stone façade selectively opens and closes, revealing public activities while densifying around more private spaces for study and research.
The central staircase of the academic building acts like a vertical campus quadrangle, connecting spaces both physically and visually.
The design’s environmental strategies minimize carbon footprint and optimize energy performance.
Outdoor green spaces—the central courtyard, rooftop gardens, and shared terraces—cultivate biodiversity and encourage social connection.
Location: Paris, France
Status: In Design
Client: SEMAPA with ICADE and the University of Chicago
In Collaboration with: PARC Architectes
Type: Educational, Mixed-Use Residential
Size: Greater than 9400 m2 / 101,000 sf
Sustainability: Targeting carbon neutrality
PARC Architectes, Associate Architect
ICADE, Owner & Developer
University of Chicago, Owner
Egis Group, Structural, HVAC, and Envelope Engineer
Elioth, Sustainability Consultant
AVLS, Acoustic Consultant
CSD-FACES, Fire Security Consultant
OLM Paysagistes, Landscape Architect
AVEC Investissement, Retail Consultant
Janet Echelman, Art Installation