collège de st-maurice – 1st prize

At the foot of the cliffs, the Lycée-collège de St-Maurice presents a heterogeneous architecture, composed of different periods and styles. In addition to the inevitable extension linked to student growth, the new teaching models reveal the necessity to rethink this site as an entity that is both united and open to its environment.

In this perspective, the return towards the initial H-shaped plan simultaneously allows the students to reclaim the outdoor spaces and the school to strengthen its relationship with the city of St-Maurice. At the end of the western courtyard, a light and wooden building consolidates by its geometry the link between the two others, also structuring the flows of students and teachers coming from the train station and the nearby sports hall.

The east courtyard, on the other hand, confirms its urban orientation through its public accessibility. Divided into three levels by geometries linked to that of the abbey architecture, its lower forecourt constitutes the main and independent entrance to the Théâtre du Martolet.

The central bar of the H-shaped building becomes the main entrance to the Lycée-collège, open and easily accessible from the two adjacent courtyards. In order to connect the different levels of the east and west courtyards an interior arrangement of steps distributed by ramps marks a place of meeting and exchange between students.

The programmatic layout allows for the distribution of all the classrooms smaller than 144 m2 in the two existing buildings. The new square shaped extension offers the required space for the larger programmes: documentation centre, exam classrooms and fablab. Its central core structure, made entirely of wood, offers a peripheral view of the entire site, the cliffs and the surrounding nature. In the same way that the single square of the Tangram puzzle structures all its pieces, this building articulates and unifies the whole site, linking two distinct architectural geometries from the last two centuries.

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