Organic vegetables transformation plant in Saint-Herblain (44)
A short food supply chain project
Connecting organic vegetables production with catering is the project developped by the Pays de la Loire disctrict. Central point between farm and fork, the unit is dimensioned corresponding the territory scale defined for a short supply chain project. The plant is the unity of place of the chain, a kind of architectural synechdoche, a part the represent the whole.
Repeatability / Contextuality
We imagined the plant as a sheltered process, combining repeatability and context adaptation. Process is permanent, and can be repeated in different territories. Facades and roof are the shelter that refers to the context, Lycée Jules Rieffel here. Lycée is located in a large territory fringe, framed by two major roads of Nantes area. A piece of countryside you go to passing through the generic commercial architecture that bords most major french cities.
Architecture / Landscape
The Lycée is made of an odd architecture, a kind of Oxford-like made in the 80’s. Not the design we wanted to follow, but a design we had to position in relation to because of its expressivity. We choose to look the landscape qualities of the site. Espacially toward the « Garden in Movement », developed by french landscape architect Gilles Clement at the north side of the large Lycée area. We combined the image of the vine, strong geometry supporting plant, with weaved wicker. Weaved wicker represents at the same time the basket in which you put the fresh cut vegetables and the interlacings and stacking of branches that animates the Garden in Movement.
Pocess / Shelter
The building consists in 2 volumes made of prefabricated elements, sheltered by a large roof. First volume welcomes the process area and a technical area facing the service courtyard. Second volume is dedicated to office and vestiaries.
The gap between these volumes is a pedagogical corridor that allows to see the process ongoing without entering hygienically ruled zone..
Short supply chain applied to Architecture
We put in abyme the short supply chain, applying it to Architecture: - we used local woods. - heat extracted from process zone (8°C in work and storage areas) is used to warm water. - a lagooning area has been set. - water used for process is UV treated to be sent back into the first process operations that consumes 85% of the water consumption. The 15% remaining are used to water vegetable cultivated nearby.
A delicate insertion
The plant disposal preserves the landscape qualities of the site. The vehicule access is located on north of a band of trees, that frame, with the existing building, the plant entrance. The implantation bias minimizes the visual impact of the service courtyard. Better grass than rolled asphalt ! Perspective toward plant entrance is magnified by light alignement and a fold in the façade.