Emerging from its planted base, the Espace Mayenne is an urban landmark visible from the northern ring road. To the west its shape is sculpted by the landscape, which forms the protected concourse and penetrates inside the building, smoothly inviting visitors to discover the interior. In the spirit of the etymology of the word “Arena”, the grandstands and services are built into an excavated embankment that forms a landscaped base. Above this, the 3 halls (the main hall, the training hall and the conference hall) are arranged in a star shape around a sheltered concourse overlooking the green heart of the complex. The unitary façade with its tight curves covered in anodised aluminium scales plays with variations in the light and helps the building blend in with its surroundings. Each hall has its own “face”: a large glazed frame that highlights the landscape seen from inside and becomes a communication tool at night by revealing what is happening inside. The regular pattern of aluminium scales forms pixels that make it possible to include dynamic signage on all the façades, bringing the building alive and making it able to communicate. An eye-catching landmark seen from the northern ringroad, it becomes part of the landscape opening onto the urban park and the neighbourhood to the south. The building offers complementary functions and uses that go beyond the brief, taking into account the economic and operational dimension of the facility. This is true, for example, of the main hall with its removable façade and reversible stage, which makes it possible to organise outdoor concerts or to double the surface area in “exhibition” mode.
Véronique Zamant, Pauline Lazareff, Kalina Kurkova, Christel Dudragné