24.11.2015

New Generation Research Center

The public dimension of the MRI and its notoriety, beyond its scientific and technical program, will be linked to the great freedom that the place will offer and the sense of discussion, debate, freedom, well being, of ownership, transparency that it allows.

… A home serving the emergence of new practices
Today a public place must create the opportunity to expand the uses, to create bridges over functions or programs, to allow meetings, debates and exchanges. The MRI will offer a flexibility, which will make it capable of receiving a variety of uses, to adapt, to offer a familiar atmosphere but still flexible, and most of all it is a space that is capable of attracting a ‘young’ audience.

For us, the success of the project is by having a maximum of availability of the space and at the same time independence in the use of the space. The MRI will therefore allow this flexible use and programming of the space, offering an infinite combination of rooms, spaces, and time of use, inside the widest possible volume: being open and allowing a separation of the space; temporarily re-configure; to use a large space and being able to divide it into small spaces. In the image of the Swiss army knife, the MRI will ensure multiple functions in a rational and efficient compact volume.

…To meet local convergences
The MRI is in the heart of the vibrant urban renewal of the peninsula of Caen. The site, located along the canal, is a visible and exposed site in an area that is under a redevelopment. Here is written the story of the transformation of a city on itself, and thus the project has a responsibility to show an exemplary and cohesive architecture. In the project area where innovation is the rule, the site located near major projects requires not to be identical with its surroundings, not just to preserve itself but also to adopt, in its place, a conquering attitude.

Although the neighborhood is marked by a collection of autonomous architecture (Cargo, ENSAM, BMVR, the courthouse), the coming of a new building should not give the impression of “yet another object” fully autistic to his environment. In this context it is a continuation of another type of architecture: based on confrontation rather than joint ownership and seeking a common geometry in the plan, it guarantees harmony between these different and unique architectural expressions of its context.

It is basically the identity of a neighborhood marked by the strong integrity of each of its buildings that it is perpetuated. Rising to innovative writings of this neighborhood: original, rational and autonomous, it is ultimately the urban challenge that must meet here a new architectural proposal.

COMPACTNESS /// A landmark architecture
The unique, but at the same time privileged, location of the site – at the crossroad of different views, those of the banks of the Orne and the bridgehead of the Canal Victor Hugo – gives it a strategic position.

The project’s compactness gives it character and makes it an architectural landmark. Reinterpreting the image of the vertical ‘shed’, it saves space on the ground floor, a true resource, and unfolds vertically while providing the necessary and respectful distances with its neighbors, the ENSAM and the Cargo.

Slightly turned of axes to ensure a continuity of the views and to respect the neighboring buildings, the MRI is positioned in close contact with the built environment. This precise placement in the axe of l’Abbaye aux Dames and the future of the future Parc de l’Ile, clears the MRI on its four sides while its set of dimensions and the precise location structures, activates and reveals the triptych that constitutes the ENSAM, the CARGO and MRI.

The MEGAFLOOR: flexibility and suppleness
We propose to build a high-capacity structure, which makes it possible to invent a device that can create a set of rich and diverse situations. A prefabricated and efficient structure determines free floors, makes it flexible and capable of evolving, thus adjusted to the needs of the program.

The optimization of the space for circulation and the conception of a spatial grid are the foundation of the project’s freedom and give its ability to respond to diverse and functionally different demands of the program, a program that can change and evolve with time. It is therefore to combine an optimized frame bearing points with almost unlimited ability to change the partitioning.

… A superposition of spaces, of ambiances, of climates. We give ourselves the only goal of organizing two types of spaces: the free plan and serving spaces (storage, toilets, vertical circulation).

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