Program: Creation of a university campus that will harbour four institutions of higher learning: ESARC Evolution and ESG Toulouse (schools of business), Digital Campus (school for web and digital media) and LISAA (school for digital graphic arts)
Localisation: Labège, France
Clients: Vinci Immobilier | Midi2i
Architect: TAA Toulouse | Heads of Project: Julie Pires, Aurélie Guinel
Surface: 4 477 m²
Cost: 4,9 M€
Delivery date: September 2018
Distinction: Palmarès Technal 2019 (winner) | Facades2Build Awards 2019 (winner) | ADC Awards 2020 (nominated)
Photographer: Roland Halbe
The goal of the project is to create a university campus that will harbour four institutions of higher learning: ESARC Evolution and ESG Toulouse (schools of business), Digital Campus (school for web and digital media) and LISAA (school for digital graphic arts). The project site is located in ENOVA (formerly Innopole), an innovation-oriented business park in the municipality of Labège, to the south-east of Toulouse and adjacent to the Canal du Midi.
Laid out in the form of an L, the campus building is three floors high. Its lobby, spanning its entire height and width, creates a high degree of transparency between the street and the wooded interior of the lot. The building is carefully situated to allow the centre of the lot to become a park planted with tall and mature trees. It is organized in two wings connected by the central lobby with its monumental stair.
The north-west wing is home to a multipurpose room, mechanical rooms, and offices on the ground floor. Its upper levels house the administrative offices for the school, which look out over the garden on the south-west side, as well as several classrooms at the north end. The east wing houses the majority of classrooms and computer rooms on its upper levels, while on the ground floor, large classrooms and an amphitheatre open up to an outdoor footpath that follows the stream flowing behind the building. The pedestrian walkways and parking spaces represent a combined area of 2,391 m² (25,740 ft²), while green space covers 2,271 m² (24,445 ft²) or 34% of the parcel. The campus is unfenced and the pedestrian walkways make it easy to access from the public space. This was central to the architectural intention: to achieve a perfect continuity with the neighbouring green spaces even while defining the identity of the campus as an independent identity. To this end, 68 trees and flowering shrubs were planted throughout the grounds.
The campus offers a uniform architectural envelope, composed of perforated and folded aluminium panels. By catching and reflecting light, the panels provide thermal comfort in summer, while integrating the building with its environment in a highly sensitive way. From the interior, the micro-perforation of the metal panels not only filters the solar radiation and creates high-quality daylighting but also preserves views to the outside. Glass and concrete complete the palette of materials, an architectural language that finds meaning in elegant simplicity.
Materials: Exposed concrete, clear glazing with grey powder-coated aluminium framing, micro-perforated and folded aluminium skin.