360º View Tower Nantes: a City Landmark

LAN

Architects: LAN (Local Architecture Network) Paris
Location: Nantes, France
Year: 2018
Photography: Julien Lanoo

The 360º View Tower represents the end and the beginning of the Brossette block. Seen from the Loire River, its volume heralds all the elements that will be developed thereafter across the site. Conversely, when viewed from the south, this architecture will complete a succession of spaces and connections that will give the Brossette city block its character. The net volume imagined in the beginning had very quickly to be enlarged and adjusted. This involved a design that took into account the trees, the perspective from the main axis of the site, the dialog with the system of variable heights of the other buildings, and its role as a landmark.

It contains 79 apartments as well as commercial space on the ground floor. It is located on the northern end of the lot, at the corner of Boulevard G. Doumergue and Rue F. Albert. Located on the axis of the Brossette courtyards, the building is the northern edge of the Place Brossette. It stands parallel to Boulevard G. Doumergue, with a setback from the public space ranging from 7 to 3 metres. On Rue F. Albert, the building has a setback of 11 to 4 metres from the streets. The volume is aligned with the Brossette public space.

A commercial space is located at the corner of Boulevard G. Doumergue and Rue F. Albert. This space has a net surface area of 235sqm, and will take advantage of its privileged position between the quays of the Loire and the Place Brossette to enliven the base of the tower and the adjacent public spaces.

The upper floors (GF+1 to GF+18) contain apartments ranging in size from 1 to 4 bedrooms. The largest apartments take up the upper floors, with duplex apartments occupying the top floors (GF+17 and GF+18). The building’s structure (stress-bearing façade + column and beam construction system) allows for great flexibility in floorplans, the layout of the various typologies being adaptable to the requirements of future buyers.
The floor space devoted to housing in the program amounts to 4,821sqm of net surface area.

The building is the highest of all those comprising the Brossette city block, culminating at 55 metres with 18 stories above the ground.

The building takes full advantage of its height, opening broadly onto its context and, especially, onto the Loire River and the city’s historic centre.

This building serves as a landmark for the development. Its form is composed of three strata: the base (Ground Floor-GF+6), the intermediate layer (GF+7 and GF+8), and the emergent part (GF+9-GF+18). The intermediate level and the emergent parts are set back, offering spacious private terraces overlooking this privileged context. The volume narrows as it rises, echoing the polar trees beside it. Each shift in volume corresponds to the height of neighbouring buildings, harmonizing its relationship with these variations.

Benefiting from its exceptional location on the banks of the Loire, 84% of the apartments offer views overlooking the river; the remaining part (16%) being oriented in a southerly direction overlooking the Place Brossette.

 

Materiality

The smooth brushed aluminium façade gives the building a unified look, while capturing the reflections of its context. At night, the interplay is inverted, and the building is enlivened by the varying uses inside, glimpsed through the perforations of the cladding. These aluminium plates also serve to manage the apartments’ exposure to sunshine.

Shutters

The façade is composed of a regular horizontal framework applied to all four façades. The design of this framework was created from the interior of the apartments to offer framed panoramic views that take full advantage of the tower’s height and the quality of the context (the Loire River, the historic town centre, the Île de Nantes…). The magnificent perspectives are accentuated by high and low windows. The concrete stress-bearing façade is covered over the exterior insulation of mineral wool with a brushed aluminium cladding mechanically fixed to a secondary metal frame.

The framework of the façade is composed of these solid, horizontal and vertical strips alternating with perforated parts in front of the joinery. The perforated metal sheet is fixed to the front of the lower window, and slides in front of the upper one. The perforated shutter slides vertically (one part upwards and the other downwards) behind the unperforated aluminium plates.

Framed views

Standing beside the Loire River, the tower rises to a height of 18 floors. The arrangement of the façades from the outside, composed of windows on each level, distorts the scale. Inside the apartments, panoramic windows offer vantage points overlooking the Loire and its surroundings.

 

Apartments

Most of the apartments benefit from spacious loggias, extending living areas towards the outside. The flooring of the loggias is composed of poured concrete, whereas the vertical partitions are covered in light grey plaster. The joinery, hidden behind the cladding, is in light grey PVC.
The fixed cladding and the sliding shutters guarantee the privacy of the loggias and offer protection from the wind (especially in the apartments of the upper floors).

Each apartment is organized around a large loggia, a genuine extension of the interior living space towards the outside. During the summer, these loggias help ensure ventilation of the apartments. They are set back from one floor to the next.