A major urban renewal project is underway in an abandoned rail logistics station in the northeastern 18th arrondissement Paris. The masterplan of the seven-hectare area will give rise to a whole new district, the International Chapel, a hub of urban, social, environmental and technological innovation. Work has been underway on the project for several years, and in 2019 the neighborhood was ready to welcome around 1,500 new residents and businesses; it is expected to be completed by 2030. The blocks of the Chapel’s international masterplan have been awarded to a number of architectural firms through design competitions; Floornature has already presented a few of them, such as the towers in Block E designed by Brenac & Gonzalez & Associés and MOA Architecture. Block G was recently completed on plans by the Parisian studios of Moussafir Architects & Nicolas Hugoo Architecture.
While sharing a certain number of functionalities with the other blocks, the project by Moussafir Architects & Nicolas Hugoo Architecture offers housing units of different types, including atypical housing for students, researchers and young workers or small businesses: housing built on the basis of the SOHO or Small Office Home Office concept, hybrid units combining a workspace with a living space.
Block G consists of three main volumes sharing a number of common architectural principles, such as compactness and geometric severity, or the differentiation and identification of apartments. The three volumes are: a common basis for the whole block of SOHO commercial units and spaces, which, as the architects say, respond to the idea of ​​”a unitary lower world“and ensure that the complex is integrated with its surroundings, and two residential towers rising from this base, described as”a very diverse upper world“.
The SOHO units designed by the architects in the base are two-level residential units, like townhouses, each with its own private outdoor space, like a terrace or small patio, staggering the units so that daylight can penetrate at the heart of the new block.
The G1 tower was designed by Nicolas Hugoo Architecture and Tour G2 by Moussafir Architects. With different facades and heights, the two volumes meet the same distribution criteria: the architects concentrate the vertical links in the central core of the two volumes, with living functions arranged around them in concentric circles. The apartments are accessible from the center of the building, with utility areas and all small rooms located near the entrance. Larger rooms such as bedrooms and living room are arranged in an ideal circle around this central core, along the facades; this ensures that the main spaces where people spend the majority of their time have direct contact with their surroundings and the landscape, as well as optimal natural lighting and comfort thanks to the large windows.

(Agnese Bifulco)


Address: Chapelle International planning sector, 75018 Paris, lot G
Program: 105 apartments including 40 social housing (G1) and 65 intermediary (G2), 18 SOHO (small office / home office), 2 shops and 83 parking spaces.
Surfaces: 8,947 m² SDP (G1 2,839 m² + G2 4,815 m² + Shops and SOHO 1,293 m²)
Calendar: Competition won in 2014, delivery in 2021
Moussafir Architects (main architect, designer of SOHO and G2 block: Jacques Moussafir with Jérôme Hervé, Amélie Brulé, Ary Justman, Amélie Rigaud and Marty Ilievsky)
Nicolas Hugoo Architecture (associate architect, designer of Block G1, the facade of the base and the Infras: Nicolas Hugoo with Julie Vinois, Sylvie Nguyen and Louise de Chatellus)
Co-contractors: BMF (economist), Batiserf Engineering (structure), Louis Choulet Engineering (fluids and HQE), Point d’Orgue (acoustician)
Labels and certifications: RT2012 – City of Paris Climate Plan, H&E profile A performance option, Effinergie +
Urban planning: AUC
General building contractor: Léon Grosse
Photo credits: © Luc Boegly (01, 03-07) and © Hervé Abbadie (02, 08-19)

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