- Client : Compagnie de Phalsbourg
- Design Team : Irene Mennini, Matteo Alfonsi, Ludovico Laura, Aurélien Leriche, Ángel J. Sánchez, YunSil AHN, Klaudyna Stanek, Luca Bregni, Giacomo Termini, Judy Elkhatib, Ajmal Majeed
- City : Villefontaine
- Country : France
Text description provided by the architects. The contemporary society understands the code of luxury represented by the black and white contrast. Hence, a place where luxury meets natural life and vernacular tradition, was the core idea throughout the design process of The Village – Outlet Shopping Center.
Located at the gates of Lyon, in the heart of the 2nd tourist wealth of France, on the highway of winter sports, "The Village" represents an exceptional potential, able to accommodate a very large clientele. This architectural complex goes against the traditional pattern and creates a gable roof style cluster of elements, bringing about impressive visual impact. Based on the "harmonious unity of tradition, modernity, and function", this project creates a brand new luxury lifestyle shopping experience.
The Outlet Center evokes, as its name suggests, the traditional French village of Isère. But, reinterpreted in black and white codes, or rather in "shadows and light". The site, an old gravel pit is marked by the imposing presence of the slope of the railways which dominates the plaza. The volume of the silo car park fits into a similar volume and mimics the landscape. This car park with 1600 parking spaces is adorned with promenade balconies, extending into ramps on hillsides, offering a landscaped walk that the visitor enjoys starting from the parking.
The green valley complex, designed with the traditional vernacular village concept of merging nature and human scale, weaves its way into the daily life of city dwellers through the simple roof geometry. Four hamlets of white houses with double-pitched roofs, fit in a ring arrangement with natural forms covered with vegetation, which forms the ‘crown’. This ‘crown’ element is split into different scales and connected in various heights, where outdoor areas are connected in a pathway, responding to the functions below and shopping activities within. The green element converts the silo parking into a vital landscape, surrounding the central crown and merging the whole site into one fluid shopping experience.
The impression of exclusivity felt by the visitor is also reinforced by the scale of the stores, and the materials used, which brings sensuality and brilliance to the whole architectural ensemble.The Facade consists of different levels of transparency with store fronts transitioning from transparent at the bottom to white tips at the top, blurring the boundaries of the materials between the glass and the white siding. Similar to the tops of snowy mountains, this makes the buildings appear crystal-like.
More than just a shopping mall, «The Village» is a desired destination with green spaces, concert stages, and a whole range of services. Additionally, a large lake flanking the village provides stepped seating for visitors to enjoy a fountain show along with magical visual projections on the water every night. This first of its kind “brand village” in the region includes 120 luxury, premium luxury, and sports brands as well as 11 restaurants. All technical installations and service areas are visually masked by vegetation or decorative elements, embedded within the architecture of the contemporary vernacular cluster.