Bordeaux > P&M House

Bordeaux > P&M House

This building was once a warehouse for cocoa powder production and the architects decided to preserve a maximum number of original elements in their designs for its renovation. The total surface area of the renovated building was 235 m2, distributed over two floors and basking in the industrial atmosphere of the original. The building stands 30 m back from the road; the ground floor has an industrial concrete floor, while the first floor enjoys wooden flooring. The original wooden staircase leading upstairs has been preserved. The strip of glazing inserted into one of the long roof slopes has also been retained, although the polycarbonate panels have been replaced by new glazing, to ensure water-tightness and thermal efficiency. The first floor offers an open space beneath the glazed panels, allowing light to come flooding into the building’s heart. The ground floor is organised around a series of metal crossbars bearing the joists which in turn bear the load of the first floor, with uprights positioned at 3 m intervals. Caravan-bedrooms have been inserted into these spaces for the children and parents. The bathroom and laundry room are positioned to the building’s rear, behind a plasterboard wall, while the kitchen is positioned directly above these facilities, on the first floor. The remaining space on the first floor is devoted to a spacious living-cum-dining room. As the bars of the guard-rail had disappeared, the architects replaced them with elements more commonly encountered on a building or road maintenance site: vertically positioned orange ropes, some 90 cm long, are linked to other coloured belts normally used to indicate the presence of gaz (yellow), electricity (green) or water (blue). This underscores the industrial aesthetics of the overall design and the colours bring a touch of warmth to the whole. The design of the building’s façade remains unchanged, but on the gable, the bricks, which had become porous, have been sheathed in undulating galvanised metal cladding. In front of the building, between the entrance to the warehouse and the road, a place for playing boules has been created, along with a pathway and a terraced area. The renovation has a happy-go-lucky feel about it, and each minor change made to the original is reversible. What remains to be invented is how each family member will create their own intimate space, over and above the conventions of a ‘normal’ house. The whole has an air of nomadic freedom about it, inviting those who live there to enjoy the comfortable non-conformity created within its good-humoured walls.
program
conversion of a warehouse into a house
project management
atelier King Kong, in association with Marie Bühler
client: P&M
location: Bordeaux (33)
surface area: 235 m²
date: completed in april 2014
images/photos: Antoine Guilhem-Ducléon
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