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Franklin Azzi Architecture : Beaupassage

In the heart of the Capital, architect Franklin Azzi writes a new chapter of the Parisian passages, with the aptly named Beaupassage: a gallery of 4 744 square meters of floor space entirely dedicated to epicureans. An alliance of the traditional and the contemporary, in the facades as in the plates.

Last August, Beaupassage opened in the popular 7e arrondissement of Paris: a link between the boulevard Raspail, the streets of Grenelle and Bac, but also and especially between four centuries of history. An exquisite corpse for a temple of the exquisite!

If the official inauguration took place just three months ago, the adventure really goes back seven years ago, when the promoter Laurent Dumas and his company Emerige acquire two pieces of city adjoining, which do not communicate with each other and accuse an altimetry difference of one meter. A long process of radiography, design and renovation conducted by B & B then commits, before Franklin Azzi joins the team. Some hyperrealistic sketches were then enough to convince the client to entrust to the French designer the coherence of this set composed of six new buildings or rehabilitated, dating from the XVIIe the XXe century. Among these, the little convent of Récollettes - female counterpart of the Récollets convent located in the 10e borough in Paris -, and the iconic building of the 1930 years designed by Denis Honegger rue de Grenelle, whose porch is one of the three accesses of the operation today revisited by the artists Eva Jospin, Fabrice Hyber and Romain Bernini . Even more improbable in this urban imbroglio, the presence of a Renault hall made of metal, brick and glass.

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Three years of work were necessary so that, behind the facades of buildings that shaped the profile and reputation of the City of Light, the most adventurous taste buds do not discover the hidden side of the neighborhood: industrial this time. Ironically, the five-storey garage, once out of sight, has become one of the flagship structures of the operation, including an underground logistics area - which has required significant underperformance. - shops, shops and R + 1, offices and housing penthouse. The replaced or added bricks contrast here voluntarily with the original pavers, in order to introduce a "Architectural 14 Carbon Concept"as the designer likes to say.

In the mixed island Beaupassage, we eat and work in one of 14 commercial lots, but we also live in 59 housing - including social 10 -, ranging from studios to T5 200 square meters. The whole is connected on the ground floor by an open pedestrian walk paved and vegetated by the landscape architect Michel Desvignes. An intervention that humbly justifies Franklin Azzi: "I am like a general practitioner, if I need it, I ask specialists". Between the 14 stalls in which big names in gastronomy have installed new culinary concepts within reach of all budgets, this artist has reproduced a sample of species present in the forests of Île-de-France. Finally, "It has become an urban shortcut, almost a passage of desire which, although it is deprived of all the qualities of a public space", tenderly concludes the master builder.

A contemporary gallery that, if it takes the codes of the traditional shopping gallery, detaches and offers more than a passage: a ballad in the land of the senses.

To learn more, visit the Franklin Azzi site

Photographs: Alexandre Tabaste, Charlotte Donke and Anne Emmanuelle Thion

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