Physics Institute, Nice

Conceived as a component of the future commercial area Nice Méridia, the Inϕni project is the culmination of a thought process that strove to create a discreet structure. The project carries its weight in terms of environmental construction and integration within a landscape. The building is split horizontally by a shadow gap, an architectural testament to the two functions it shelters. The first two levels will host the laboratories and research rooms. They are made of concrete and sheathed in white metallic strands that allow the façade to modify its opacity/transparency, depending on the activities within the building. These metal strands also ensure solar shading and visual protection in order to guarantee confidentiality. Floors two and three are for offices and common areas. Their wooden structure and mixed concrete-wood floorboards answer the university’s concerns in terms of mitigating the building’s impact on its surroundings. Those two levels also seek to bring about a healthy and comfortable environment for scientists and researchers. The receding northern façade of the building gives way to a generous rooftop garden accessible on the second floor: a true place of relaxation overlooking the university’s park. The main underlying concepts of the buildings are the following: fluid internal organisation, scalability of the research units, equal treatment for all scientists and researchers, qualitative work environment, and implementation of technical and functional demands. The entrances are clearly differentiated and articulated around a central core of vertical circulation. The research units unfold around this central space and occupy four levels. This central space, akin to an atrium, acts as an extension of the hall on the ground level and the first floor. It is a true “backbone” of the building, conducive to encounters and exchanges. Furthermore, it can transform into a convivial space open onto the exterior terraces on the second and third floor. The project is built around a bioclimatic approach based on passive solutions: a highly compact building, outdoor insulation, effective solar protection suitable for the facility’s purposes, and natural light optimisation. Bioclimatic performance is assessed via the Bbio coefficient, which is calculated in the framework of the RT2012 standard (Thermal Regulation). This project reaches the ambitious Bbioref goal of -20%. Experiments in physics carried out within this institute often require antivibration capabilities, therefore, the structure itself provides this. A concrete slab has been laid on anti-vibration studs, which are themselves laid on the building’s slab (said structure is 1,40 metre thick).

Physics Institute of Nice

Main Contractors
Architect: AIA Architectes
Engineering: AIA Ingénierie
Acoustics: Peutz
Environmental expertise: AIA Environnement

60 Physics laboratories
2 floors of offices, libraries

8,300 m² (net floor area: 6,377 m² – 2,023 m² of underground parking)

€13M Tax-Free

Competition Winner 2017
Delivery 2020

Partager le projet