Employment and Training Centre, Rodez (France)

 

Employment and Training Centre, Rodez (France)

“The municipal employment & training centre in Rodez, which houses several organisations providing support to jobseekers, is both an office building and a public building. 

 

 

 

 

 

Architects: Jacques Lacombe and Michel de Florinier
Technique: VMZINC® Sine wave profile and VMZINC® Perforated sine wave profile, Surface aspect: PIGMENTO® Red

 

Located on the rue de Béteille, a busy street below the historic centre of the former capital of the Rouergue region, the building is immediately recognisable by its two parallelepipedic volumes. It is positioned on a street of residential buildings from various periods
with various heights. Jacques Lacombe and Michel de Florinier created a sculptural style that strengthens the public status of the building while compensating for the differences in height between the two adjoining volumes (varying from 2 storey to 4 storey) and for the slope of the street. This fragmentation made it possible to allow natural light to enter the site, while at the same time creating fissures and perforations that give depth to the street space.

 

 

The structure, which features large spans and two overhangs over the public space, is made of steel. The architects chose preweathered zinc for the envelope rather than lacquered steel, which they considered would be less durable. Sine wave panels in PIGMENTO® Red zinc with no overlap clad the opaque parts of the facade. The glass areas are clad with the same zinc sine wave panels but are perforated, allowing in the light without affecting the massive effect. 

 

For the architects, the scale of the T-shaped profile makes the volume legible with no superfluous details and solves all the facade configurations with a single material that guarantees an exceptional monolithic effect without being ostentatious. “The texture underscores the fragmented aspect of the programme, revealing volumes before materials. The red patina acts less like a colour than as a form of depth” explains Jacques Lacombe.