Having acquired the former head office of the daily newspaper, Sud-Ouest, located in the heart of Bordeaux, Redevco organized an architecture competition to define a project to redevelop this fragment of the city by building a large number of shops accessible via the rue Sainte-Catherine. The company invited seven teams from different countries to take part in the competition: Valode & Pistre, Reichen & Robert, L35, Chapman & Taylor, Art & Build, Arte Charpentier and DGLA. The competition was won by Valode & Pistre.
Our project focused on a contemporary architectural style linked to the site’s history and geography. Built using the same yellow stone that can be seen in the streets of the downtown area, the site takes advantage of the north-south slope of the terrain.
This slope makes it possible to manage various levels of access to the shops and to link the new square, located in the heart of the development, to the rue de la Porte-Dijeaux. The terrain’s natural slope is exploited to create a bridge over the rue Margaux, while the lower square is linked by a passageway to the rue Sainte-Catherine and the shopping district. The old C&A store is transformed into a “serpentine street”, undulating in superimposed sinusoidal lines towards Sainte- Catherine Square. This square has an upper walkway protected by a photovoltaic glass roof. Built on two levels, it recalls, in terms of the principle underlying it, classical landscape compositions such as those developed by Le Nôtre on so many occasions, particularly the Tuileries Gardens. The balcony surrounding it provides a stage-like platform overlooking the central space; spectacle is introduced naturally, the square becomes theatrical. As they make their way around the area, visitors alternatively become actors or spectators.