The new town of Marne-la-Vallée, 20 miles outside of Paris, has opened a research and civil engineering campus, which is designed by French architect Jean-Philippe Pargade. The roughly 430,000 square foot plan includes laboratories, offices, and lecture rooms, all alongside various activity facilities and an on-site restaurant.

The most striking design characteristic is subbed the "landscape wave," a billowing wave of concrete, housing the aforementioned areas, topped with a green canopy of grass. The green roof, accessible from the labs and classrooms, unites the external areas for recreation while simultaneously reinforcing the surrounding structures. The architects also used vaulted aesthetics that are often used in bridge building.

Inside, an expansive multipurpose gathering area at the ground level brings together the shared functions of the site—enclosed in glazed units overlooking the central park. Keeping sustainability in mind, the site utilizes a bio-climatic system, consisting of natural ventilation methods and a rainwater harvesting system. The site is also oriented to maximize solar gain. Read More