Versailles : Cröy Barracks

Central courtyard
Old barracks
Patrimonial dimension
Community centre
Secluded garden

Contractor :
Ville de Versailles

BASE + CVA architecte
+ BET Denizou

Budget / 750 000 €
Surface / 900 m²
Completed / 2015

It’s through inventing a new narrative, whilst still integrating the past, that the project allows us to enter into a process of renewal.

The project is based on the contrast between the courtyard, a sunny space, and the contemplative garden, a shady inaccessible patio.  A meticulous ‘mise en scène’ is established by a completely hardscaped ‘carrousel’. These two spaces reflect the typical versaillais layout, where heightened mineral and vegetal atmospheres co exist, separated by military elements.

An expanse of rolled gravel, the courtyard evokes the traditional gardens of Versailles with its simple and symmetrical layout.

A concrete passageway developed up to the main entrance of the community centre allows everyone to easily access the new facilities. Under a tree there are three benches in solid wood and metal, echoing the adjacent architectural language. A more confined space, the contemplative garden is landscaped and generously planted with species appropriate for shade. Access is blocked by a sliding barrier in steel vertical bars, creating a verdant green background visible from the carrousel and the big courtyard. The quality of the space is assured by the natural atmosphere which is reinforced by the colonisation of shade loving plants, creating a woodland undergrowth atmosphere. The installation of a reflective metal sheet at the forefront of the garden creates a senses of depth and visually enlarges the limited space in the small garden.

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