Under Threat: Ecole d’Architecture de Nanterre
The very existence of the Nanterre school, site an emblem of the organic architecture of the seventies, is endangered.
Once commissioned by the Ministry of Education and designed by architect Jacques Kalisz, it was built in 1971-72 by Geep Industrie. Born as a life-inspired combination of elements, this modular architecture makes relations among students easier, bringing walls down in order to promote a smoother flow of information.
The building was closed in 2004 when the school moved out. It has since been exposed to the four winds, through its broken panes. Wrapped in vegetation, the degradation of this shamefully neglected architectural heritage is concealed from the public eye.
It is now being put up for sale by the Ministry of Finance, current owner on behalf of the French state. The city of Nanterre has started to consider the rehabilitation and reuse of the edifice and has offered to bid.
Two associations, Friends of Nanterre architecture school and Documentation, COnservation of architectural sites born from MOdern MOvement (Docomomo France) organized an on-site mobilization on January 29th 2011 for the preservation, the listing as well as the environmental, social and cultural reuse of the building.
More details: PDF file below and website.