Mont De Marsan Media Library by archi5


The Media Library stands in the middle of the Bosquet barracks, and care has been taken to augment the dialogue with the place’s strong architectural whole.

Courtesy of Communauté d’agglomération du Marsan
Courtesy of Communauté d’agglomération du Marsan

With its clean envelope of pure geometric lines, a 197 ft x 197 ft square, the building complies with the classical layout yet contrasts with its austerity by offsetting the system with a corner opening onto the city. Its facades reflect the surrounding barracks like a respectful, deferential mirror.

photo Didier Boy de la Tour
photo Didier Boy de la Tour

The building has been designed as a covered cultural square by making the façades transparent and the floor uniform, also through its position in the middle of the barracks.

photo Didier Boy de la Tour
photo Didier Boy de la Tour

This design is read by extending the planted roof to make it seem to be hovering above the ground. The grassy incline that surrounds the building draws the eye upwards, then gives way to alternating transparent and reflecting glass facades.

photo Didier Boy de la Tour
photo Didier Boy de la Tour

The Media Library’s central location in the military drill yard inspired a building with four main sides, varying from one another by simply adapting to the direction they face.

photo Gaston F. Bergeret
photo Gaston F. Bergeret

The Media Library confirms its identity from whatever angle it is viewed. At night it becomes a lantern that brings the square to life, turning it into an inviting, open and transparent space.

photo Gaston F. Bergeret
photo Gaston F. Bergeret

The interior space on the ground floor is completely open and centres around a patio, the design of which has been inspired by Matisse’s paintings of acanthus leaves, and the volumes of which recall Alvar Aalto’s vases.

photo Didier Boy de la Tour
photo Didier Boy de la Tour

The various functions are organised naturally on the open floor space, which maintains visual continuity and diffuses daylight evenly. It is the first patio used by a Media Library as an open reading room. It is a place that provides a relaxed, contemplative atmosphere for its users.

photo Gaston F. Bergeret
photo Gaston F. Bergeret

User intimacy is created by the strong architectural elements that inspire visual interplay. It may well be this «surprise», almost hidden, patio that makes the building so popular with the public.

photo Gaston F. Bergeret
photo Gaston F. Bergeret

Location: Place de la Caserne Bosquet, Mont-de-Marsan, France
Architects: archi5
Engineer, Economist: Mizrahi
Acoustic Designer: Tisseyre & Associés
Area: 4750.0 sqm
Cost: 12 309 000 € Excl. Tax.
Year: 2012
Client: Communauté d’agglomération du Marsan
Photographs: Didier Boy de la Tour, Courtesy of Communauté d’agglomération du Marsan, Gaston F. Bergeret

photo Didier Boy de la Tour
photo Didier Boy de la Tour
photo Gaston F. Bergeret
photo Gaston F. Bergeret
photo Gaston F. Bergeret
photo Gaston F. Bergeret
photo Gaston F. Bergeret
photo Gaston F. Bergeret
photo Gaston F. Bergeret
photo Gaston F. Bergeret
photo Gaston F. Bergeret
photo Gaston F. Bergeret
photo Gaston F. Bergeret
photo Gaston F. Bergeret
photo Gaston F. Bergeret
photo Gaston F. Bergeret
photo Gaston F. Bergeret
photo Gaston F. Bergeret

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