A flagship project situated beside one of the busiest urban infrastructure hubs in Europe.
Drawing inspiration from Gare Saint-Lazare’s extraordinary heritage as the first railway station in France, and its presence within the impressionist paintings of Claude Monet, the project is designed to reshape the district’s dense urban environment, and reconnect visitors to the spirit of Paris.
The project is part restoration, part rehabilitation of a significant protected Haussmann building, with the addition of a contemporary 20,000m2 structure, reaching up to seven storeys. The striking contemporary intervention is characterised by a delicately tinted glass grid façade, rising above peristyle lower floors.
The design of the new building is directly inspired by the chromatic palette of Monet’s Gare Saint-Lazare paintings and we have infused the contemporary façade with colour, light and history. Its angled glass surfaces subtly reflect the shifting skies and differing qualities of light throughout the day, creating a relaxing ambience to counter the activity of the station - which over 100 million passengers pass through a year – offering travellers new aspects, and experiences of the space.
On the station side of the building, Grand Central’s façade reflects the historic glass roof of the adjacent French National Heritage site, sensitively shaping itself within the context of this iconic architecture. The eco-nourishing system on the rooftop offers 800sqm of urban field with views over Paris, accessible to all of the tenants within the building’s workspaces.
In the manner of the painter Claude Monet who depicted his impressions of Saint-Lazare, we have mixed the modernity of metal structures with the recollections of steam locomotives and juxtaposed them against the movements of clouds and variations of light to create a truly sensory experience.