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Launch of France’s tallest wood building in Bordeaux

France’s tallest timber high-rise was inaugurated in Bordeaux on Tuesday, October 30, 2018. The building, designed by Nicolas Laisné and Dimitri Roussel and constructed by the Pichet group, stands 31 meters high.

Custom-built and delivered, Perspective is the name of France’s highest timber office block. Standing 31 meters tall, the 7-story building featuring 4,438 m² of ground surface was inaugurated on Tuesday, October 30, 2018, in Bordeaux, in France’s Gironde department. Constructed by the Pichet group and designed by Nicolas Laisné and Dimitri Roussel, the building is located in the first block of the Saint Jean-Belcier mixed development zone to the south-east of the city. The location is strategic because it is close to the Saint-Jean train station, the city’s main arteries and the future Simone Veil Bridge, making the building an integral part of the fabric of the district.

The Pichet group chose solid wood for its low-carbon properties. The material stores carbon instead of emitting it, according to the builder, who added that, « one cubic meter of wood stores one metric ton of CO2“. The construction company used local suppliers for the materials. The post and beam structure was contructed with glulam and Bordeaux pine, and the cladding with wood sourced from France’s Limousin region. The company also stressed the fact that wood is 12 times more insulating than concrete. This energy-efficient strategy means the building can be classified as passive.

Post and beam technology made it possible to construct a building five to seven times lighter than a concrete structure, shortening construction times and reducing pollution. The parts of the timber-frame constructions were even prefabricated and assembled directly on site. Construction took just four months: from June to October 2017.

The design choices made by architects Nicolas Laisné and Dimitri Roussel were respected, right down to the building interior. According to the designers,« false ceilings were kept to a minimum in order to allow the timber structure of the building be visible, and also to create space”. The beams that give the building its structure were also left untreated. “This aesthetic choice provides the building with a warm atmosphere and hushed acoustics, while its large windows and terraces attract light and offer stunning views of the city,” said the Pichet group.

Right in the heart of the building, a wooden staircase designed by Briand & Bertherau connects the floors and the various workspaces. It incorporates natural light and ventilation with views of the garden.

“The building was designed entirely with natural ventilation in mind. This solution is enhanced by its U-shape. The atrium acts as a solar chimney thanks to a day/night ventilation system with automated inlets and outlets at the top and open-plan office spaces,” explained Laisné and Roussel.

Photo credits :
Photo 1 : © Phil Labeguerie
Photo 2 : © Nicolas Laisné et Dimitri Roussel
Published on 28 November 2018