Pellegari / Agence Bernard Bühler

© Vincent Monthiers

Architects: Agence Bernard Bühler
Location: St Pierre du Mont,
Area: 5,270 sqm
Year: 2009
Photographs: Vincent Monthiers, Courtesy of

© Vincent Monthiers

You might say there was nothing original about an estate made up of small timber-clad houses in the heart of the Landes. And yet the road that leads to it is strewn with fragments of the so-called “built environment”:unfinished estates that seem to begin and end nowhere, streets that are too wide, roundabouts, and low-lying houses whose walls are rendered in colours that beggar definition.

© Vincent Monthiers

Against this backdrop, the Saint Pierre du Mont project is like an oasis in the desert. Beside the modern architectural design, what is immediately striking when you enter the estate is the tension that has been created between the units by making the gaps between them smaller that you would usually be expected. This radical approach borders on overcrowding. Streets, gardens and parking areas are kept to a minimum. A single access road wraps round the estate, with narrow lanes leading off and winding between the housing units. With a little imagination, one might almost think the estate had been cut out of a single block of wood.

Floor Plan

The housing, ranging from studio apartments to 5-bedrooms flats, forms small interblocking units that are similar, and yet always different. This random distribution brings a sense of formal organisation and prevents monotony. Isn’t belonging to an constituated, homogeneous whole while remaining unique and different the necessary condition for any human settlement?

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* Location to be used only as a reference. It could indicate city/country but not exact address.
Cite: "Pellegari / Agence Bernard Bühler" 15 Jun 2013. ArchDaily. Accessed 30 May 2015. <>
  • Croco Dile

    This may look good against the usual trash of buildings…. But this should not be the criteria. Instead it should be the quality of the project itself, which is not at a high level.

  • Andrew

    it looks Ok now, but in 10 years it will look awful, plywood ages very badly on the outside of buildings