Andromède Neighbourhoods by Mateo Arquitectura

While The Factory, Île de Seguin (Paris, France) is just completed, Spanish agency Mateo Arquitectura unveils the Andromède Neighbourhoods design for which the agency won the first prize.
The Andromède Neighbourhood, located in Toulouse, France consists of four apartment buildings and the landscaping of a park on the site of the Andromède mixed-use development. Josep Lluis Mateo, founder of Mateo Arquitectura, presents the guidelines of the design:
Andromède: the new neighbourhood being developed in a sequence between the Aéroconstellation and the river Garonne. Our idea is to mark the start of the sequence opposite a park, the Cours Pinot, close to the main approach road, Avenue Andromède. The first plan is broken down into three volumes. The two volumes forming a corner respect the building line of the street and the central volume acts as a filter. The second plan, lower and architecturally more delicate, with wooden cladding, gently encloses the whole. At the centre, the garden, thickly planted with trees, recalls the undeveloped space beyond, the banks of the Garonne. The apartments exploit the conditions of their context: open to the south, turning their backs to the north and exploiting the terraces and gardens to enjoy the meeting with nature provided by the new neighbourhood. An interplay of contrasts is introduced between the materiality of the wooden-clad base and the more solid, brick-built bases. The three initial buildings are clad with tiles in a reference to the local historical archetype, given a modern, conceptual treatment. The building on Avenue Andromède comprises 80% black elements and 20% white. Dark as the urban asphalt of the boundary it constitutes. On the central plot, the proportion is inverted (80% white and 20% black) in a tendency to a shiny white that reflects the vegetation in the garden. The third volume on Rue Jacqueline Auriol is grey (50% black, 50% white).
The resulting volumes will be lightweight, perceived not as a continuity of colour but as clouds of pixels, a collection of dots that form a volume.
Andromède Neighbourhoods, © Mateo Arquitectura

The landscape will consist of a garden that exploits the elongated form of the plot. Vegetation and transition between urban and nature dominate the landscape design. Routes will accross the centre of the block. Vegetation will consist of German Iris, shrubby Lonicera nitida, Virginia creepers and variegated ivy. Routes and central space will link the landscape to the urban surrounding. The central space will be consolidated and left free as a boules green. Season may have influence the landscape design concept: the filter between the garden and the Court Pinot takes the form of a mass of Virginia creepers and variegated ivy that will change with the seasons: thicker and more colourful in summer, more transparent and green in winter. Another filter, this time, between the terraces and the garden includes clematis that clings to the terrace divisions.
Model, © Mateo Arquitectura

Compactness, as key element of this proposal, conforms with the HQE Label (HQE for Haute Qualité Environnementale in French) which requires low energy consumption. The Andromède neighbourhoods attempts to generate a wide variety of typologies and orientations, on each floor and in each type of building. This results in a extension of the exterior as a living space.
The Housing block is divided into four buildings: Building A, building B, building C, and building D. The first Building (or Building A) is arranged around two vertical shafts. This arrangement creates apartments with twofold orientation and recessed loggias facing either west (the Court Pinot) or south (the garden of the block's centre). The building B is thought as filter between the centre of the block and the Cours Pinot. The apartments will face a dual direction. They will be equipped with balconies at the South. These terraces will offer spectacular views of both the garden and the park.
Building C has its apartments oriented to the South overlooking the park. The volume will fans out so that it generates south-facing terraces. The building D articulates three levels with, on the ground floor, all the apartments which are cross-ventilated. These apartments will possess terraces acting as an extension of the living room. The first floor will be left free of distribution insofar as a series of one- and two-floor apartments has been alternated and typologies, then, inverted on the other floors.

Building fact
Project: Andromède Neighbourhoods
Architects: Mateo Arquitectura
Location: Toulouse, France
Client: Kaufman & Broad
Competition 2010
Surface Area: 8230 sqm

All images  Mateo Arquitectura

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