Salgore / Atelier Arcau

  • 16 Feb 2013
  • Featured Institutional Architecture Selected Works
Courtesy of

Architects: Atelier Arcau
Location: Pornic,
Program: New Headquarters of Pornic County
Year: 2012
Photographs: Courtesy of Atelier Arcau

Courtesy of Atelier Arcau

The elected representatives of Pornic County had expressed their passionate commitment to regional traditions, immediately excluding any architectural shapes which would not follow traditional volumes and templates from the Retz region: gable roof, tile roofing, etc. Because the Project was to enroll in a Business Park already connoted by previous constructions (hospital, police, and office buildings) that had all subscribed to this rule, we chose to propose a contextual and courteous project in relation to the place and its history. Therefore we got interested in what the tradition of the Retz County could reveal, and thus feed our imagination.

Courtesy of Atelier Arcau

We have developed our project reinterpreting the local salt warehouses shapes, the “Salorges” common in this part of the Atlantic coast from the Guérande peninsula to the Vendée region: long buildings, simply made; out of (and cladded with) timber. Thus we have combined two simple volumes, following the shapes of traditional buildings in the area. Wood skin, protective, is here sophisticated. It meets the requirements of an environmental and sustainable approach. A thick skin provides the necessary insulation of the building, the concrete structure assuring thermal inertia.

Courtesy of Atelier Arcau

The structured design of the façade alternates solids and voids. It participates in the control of sun exposure as much as it rhythms and composes a permanent animation of light and shade over the course of the sun. The cladding, that extends to a “protective fifth façade”, guarantee of relaxing and reassuring design, helped us mixing, with homogeneity, Tradition and Modernity.

Plan + facade
* Location to be used only as a reference. It could indicate city/country but not exact address.
Cite: "Salgore / Atelier Arcau" 16 Feb 2013. ArchDaily. Accessed 23 May 2015. <>
  • Eric D

    This exactly why you should not let an Architect describe his own work. He is way to impressed with his own use of the English language.