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Bagard & Luron : Crématorium

In Vandœuvre-lès-Nancy (54), the duo of architects Bagard & Luron has just delivered the new crematorium of the metropolis of Greater Nancy. A project of 1 200 square meters remarkable for its sobriety, which is explained by an intelligent distribution and an inspired choice of materials: a heart of warm wood wrapped in stone and zinc.

Solemn and comforting. In two words, how could the result - oh so difficult to achieve - be summed up - towards which an architect should aim when he makes a crematorium. Because if such a building is for the deceased a place of passage, it should as far as possible to avoid to inspire fear to relatives in mourning.

It is to this perilous exercise that Nadège Bagard and Marc-Olivier Luron are confronted in 2015, when they are given the task of designing this type of equipment for the Greater Nancy metropolis. Far from being intimidated, the duo "Researches the stability of forms, the clarity of volumes and the noble simplicity of natural materials" to imagine "A functional, high-performance equipment, supported by a quality architecture and emphasizing the reception conditions offered to families. "

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From these considerations follows a staple-clad wood construction, whose S-shaped plan allows to house all the imperatives mentioned in the specifications: two ceremonial rooms, offices, ovens, and of course various technical rooms. Seen from the outside, the crematorium has a deliberately abstract volumetry that conceals its function: the chimneys are for example camouflaged in a paved with zinc for more discretion. Always for the sake of decency, the building is equipped with separate access for the public - south side - and for staff - north. A precaution reinforced by indoor distribution, organized so that the relatives can not see the technical corridor giving access to the ovens and other premises reserved for staff.

In addition, three patios, pierced in the heart and periphery of the building "Accompany families' circuits by providing controlled natural light", explain the architects, while "That waiting rooms, treated like alcoves, allow us to spot the sometimes staggered arrival of other people". Once assembled, all are then invited to gather in one of the two rooms of ceremonies, remarkable by the structure in spruce left here apparent. Arranged on both sides of the building, these two essential pieces testify to the delicacy of their designers: the first thanks to its four-sided roof evoking the comfort of a house, the second by its volumetric gradually tightened around the coffin, so as to amplify the feeling of intimacy ...

To learn more, visit the site of Bagard & Luron

Photographs: Nicolas Waltefaugle

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  • Guest - David

    Simple and beautiful. Bravo!

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