As the successor to the School of Dentistry, which occupied these premises for some sixty years, the new programme will play a more general role in the university’s life, housing all the cultural and recreational programmes for the entire city-centre campus: a 400-seat amphitheatre for acoustic performances worthy of a full-fledged performance hall, a multimedia library, gym spaces, rooms for student organisations, and a recreation room for socialising.
Sitting along the Cours de la Marne, one of Bordeaux’s major thoroughfares, and the Rue Elie Gintrac, the project will include a public passageway from one street to the other, in the spirit of the public vocation of this university campus programme. The path through this landscaped block provides a respite from the density and activity of the streets leading to the Place de la Victoire.
The construction deals with several complexities. It lies within a protected area, along one of Bordeaux’s major thoroughfares, with very restricted access to the worksite and new construction tightly inserted in between the existing structures. During the excavation phase, wood and straw flooring and bas-reliefs were uncovered.
Because the new programme is slightly larger in surface area than the existing space but has significant typological differences, the work will preserve the two main existing volumes, inserting the amphitheatre in the middle of the plot.