AFAA Architecture : VillaRte

Entrusted to the Lyon agency AFAA Architecture, the construction of the new regional headquarters of Rte - Réseau Transport Electricité - is characterized by strong architectural choices and a quasi-sculptural volumetry. A project marked by a dual objective: to make the building a high security site while opening it to the urban space.

Located on the western fringe of the Girondins ZAC of 7e district of Lyon, formerly occupied by the premises of Poste-immo and Banque Postale, the VillaRte is part of a garden island composed of six buildings - the company's headquarters as well as five housing buildings -, organized around a common green space. The set of 14 square meters is governed by two contradictory poles that are essential to this type of construction: to be a site with infallible security without employees feeling locked in and the various departments being compartmentalized. The project managers therefore had the arduous task of offering a building that was both closed and open, impenetrable and pleasant.


Major constraints are found on the white, almost brutalist glazed terracotta facade, softened by the presence of vertical blind windows with relentless geometry, offering employees the comfort of working in working spaces bathed in natural light. The whole is split in two by a vertical fault entirely glazed concealing the entrance hall as well as the landing stages. Thanks to a fragmented volume, the builders were also able to insert a large number of terraces, allowing the building users to get fresh air at each of the seven levels of the VillaRte. As if dug into the volume, these outdoor spaces are clad in copper-plated metal cassettes and visible copper cables, recalling the activity of the place.


The interior design is designed to promote exchanges between the occupants. Indeed, one of the major problems of the former headquarters of the company was the little interaction between employees. A gap that needed to be addressed in the development of new premises. Thus, an inter-company restaurant was installed on the ground floor when a relaxation area named " the village place " alone benefits from three terraces.

Goodbye partitioned offices, hello free workplaces favoring movement and group emulation! VillaRte wants to be a place where it is good to work, taking into consideration the well-being of its employees.

To learn more, visit the AFAA Architecture website

Photographs: Didier Boy de la Tour

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