Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners

Centre Commercial St. Herblain

Date
1986-1987

Client
Groupe Rhodanien de Construction

Location
Nantes, France

Construction Cost
£6.3 million

21,000m2

Floor to floor height
6.5m

Overview

The shopping centre at St. Herblain, near Nantes, was built to a very strict brief. The client wanted a low-cost building in record time - one which projected the dynamic retailing operation it was to contain and could at the same time be adapted to other sites. A simple and clear architectural statement was required.

The client was familiar with the Fleetguard factory and the suspended structure of Fleetguard re-emerged at St. Herblain, with a forest of slender masts giving what could have been a basic shed a genuine architectural grace. Inside, the plan is remarkably clear and well organized. The Centre

is entered, as at Fleetguard, by way of a steel bridge, leading into a double-height reception area. A strong use of colour adds to the appeal of the building, while exposed servicing provides visual interest inside. The lightness of the construction and the provision of generous quantities of daylight make the Centre a clear counterpoint to the typical cluttered, claustrophobic out-of-town shopping centre.

At only 21,000 sq m, St. Herblain is a modest masterpiece, clear and logical, achieved at low cost.

Data

Key Facts

Date
1986-1987

Client
Groupe Rhodanien de Construction

Location
Nantes, France

Construction Cost
£6.3 million

Area
21,000m2

Floor to floor height
6.5m

Co-Architect
Atelier Claude Bucher

Structural Engineer
Ove Arup & Partners, Rice Francis Ritchie, OTH Rhone-Alpes

Services Engineer
Ove Arup & Partners/OtH

Quantity Surveyor
Thorne Wheatley Associates, Paris

Lighting Consultant
Lighting Design Partnership

Landscape Architect
David Jarvis Associates/Dan Kiley

Interior Designer
B & FL, Paris

Team

Kieran Breen

Philippa Browning

Mike Davies

Pierre Ebbo

Florian Fischotter

Marco Goldschmeid

Lennart Grut

Werner Lang

Stig Larson

Richard Rogers

Stephen Spence

John Young

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