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Behind this office building hides an old disused parking lot

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At 7 Villa du Clos de Malevart, in the 11th arrondissement of Paris, stands a 3,600 m² office building with an industrial spirit, with multiple openings. Impossible to suspect that instead of this building stood a former Volkswagen car dealership. The old building was made of opaque concrete on 3 facades, before the work was carried out which lasted 2 years. Only one facade was glass. Today, all the facades are open to the outside and the concrete has been sanded for aesthetic reasons. When you enter the premises, the framework of the old garage is easily identifiable, however.

The very low ceiling height, typical of garages, was also a constraint for h2o architects: “The semi-levels were connected by parking ramps. We removed the ramps to create patios bringing natural light and we connected the half-levels with tiered systems. The building is thus very connected», explains Antoine Santiard, architect at h2o. The central staircase takes the shape of the historic access ramp to the car park, preserving the soul of the place in its raw state. Around 42,000 cubic meters of rubble were removed to bring this space to life. The roof terrace has also been greened, offering a bright and pleasant working environment and no longer a dark and closed space.

Rehabilitation more expensive than new construction

Galia created an additional basement level and a half, and had to reinforce and even create new foundations for the building. “We restructure buildings that are obsolete due to their use or unsanitary to turn them into other things such as hotels, offices, etc. Here, an office building in a residential area makes sense», Explains Brice Errera, president of the Galia real estate group, which carries out mixed operations. So, instead of demolishing the parking lot to rebuild a new building, Galia relies on the existing one. Brice Errera recognizes, however, that renovating a parking lot into an office building is a more expensive operation than erecting a new building, around 20% more expensive.

However, this is the price to pay for “halve CO emissions2 compared to a new building », According to Vincent Bryant, co-founder of Deepki, the tenant of this atypical office building. Deepki, at the origin of a data solution to identify polluting buildings and the actions to be taken to reduce CO emissions2has also opted for offices with few partitions, but rather removable cubicles for isolation in order to limit CO emissions2 and 50% of office furniture is second hand. “We liked the symbolism of the place. In a city that is fighting against polluting transport, what could be better than taking over an old car dealership!», concludes Vincent Bryant.


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