Chalons-en-Champagne : Cnac
BASE + ARM Architectes
Chalons-en-champagne / Champagne Ardennes
budget / 0,68 M€
surface / 1,5 ha
completed / 2014
The National Centre of Circus Art (CNAC) of Châlons-en-Champagne, is located on the land of the former agricultural cooperative of the Marnaise (cereal production/activity)
Despite the progressive colonisation of the spaces and buildings by the circus school tents and the more or less permanent and itinerant installations of the CNAC, the site retains a strong industrial identity. An ultra mineral environment, derelict pathways and hangars can sometime create an inhospitable character. Nevertheless, the site of the silos has a very interesting geographical situation due to its promiscuity with the Marne canal and the natural area attached to the riverside woodland but also due to its direct connection with the centre of Châlons via the Avenue du Maréchal Leclerc.
We proposed to restore a lively character and evolving nature to the CNAC site; the image of people swarming through the site, animating it during the seasons. Our action focuses on the introduction of a dynamic plant landscape, which traverses the plot from East to West (from the Avenue to the Canal), connecting the existing buildings and pockets of parking, freeing up exterior places to work, and inviting the visitor to look around. Plurispecific and multigenerational woodland unfolds into the site; petering out sometimes into an unloading area, sometimes concentrated around a structured pedestrian area. It becomes a holding space for the outdoor equipment.