Business Incubator Training Centre in Normandy

Normandy Conversion, French Historic Building, Architect, Images, Architecture

Business Incubator Training Centre, France

Historic Normandy Building – design by h2o architectes

8 Apr 2014

Business incubator, Training centre

Design: h2o architectes

The EPF Normandie and the commune of Pont-Audemer wanted to convert the industrial site of an ancient paper factory into offices/workshops for different companies.

Pont Audemer Building
photo : Julien Attard

The ancient paper factory is a symbol of an important part of the local working class memory. The architectural conversion suggested by the agency had three principle axis of development.

Pont Audemer Building
photo : Julien Attard

Firstly, the agency was careful to preserve almost completely the volume of the factory. The serial aspect of the construction is emphasized by the creation of a few new spaces which visually cut into the mass of the building. These correspond to new entrances and new uses.

Pont Audemer Building
photo : Julien Attard

Secondly, the project concentrated on the central common space that links the different workshops, offices and meeting rooms. It was conceived of as a space capable of facilitating exchanges between the different young emerging companies. The generous circulation space includes a « street » (the central corridor) and a « square » (where can be found the building’s central staircase) ; these functional spaces become lively meeting places, beyond the strict professional context. A large roof lighting recalls the function of « passageways » in the 19th century town or covered public spaces.

Pont Audemer Building
photo : Julien Attard

Lastly, and important environmental component was included in the project from the start, marking a happy contrast with the heavy industrial past.

Pont Audemer Building
photo : Julien Attard

Business incubator, Training centre – Building Information

Program: Refurbishment of an old factory into a business incubator and training center
Lieu: Pont-Audemer (27) – F
Client: EPF Normandie, Communauté de communes de Pont-Audemer
Team: h2o architectes (lead architect) with M. Virtz quantity surveyor, Louis Choulet Mechanical and Sustainability Engineers, BMI, Structure Engineers, France Aires Exterior infrastructure Engineers
Mission: In charge of studies and construction site
Specificity: Building with high energy performance
Awarded for Sustainable Renovation Adème et Région Haute- Normandie
Shorlisted for Haute-Normandie 2014 Award for Architecture and Urbanism
Surface: 1500 m²
2500 m² exterior
Construction cost: 2 800 000 euros HT
Date: Delivered December 2013


photo : Stéphane Chalmeau
Business incubator, Training centre images / information from h2o architectes


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Business incubator, Training centre Normandy Building