Located at the end of the peninsula of the Docks, the bubbles of the Archipel come to supplement, such of the suspension points, the urban unit which constitutes the Lyon-Junction project. The round and ludic forms contrast with “terrestrial” architecture, the monumental force and the dynamism of parallelepiped volumes of the offices underline, which overhang it.
The materiality of these bubbles changes according to the functions that they contain. Detached from the quay, they evolve of opaque with transparency, dense evanescent… one would almost expect to slowly see them deriving to join the Rhone. The Archipel is a restaurant made up of five bubbles connected the ones to the others. To reach it, the walker arriving under the colossal overhang of house 8 has two solutions which are offered to him: either it borrows the footbridge skirting the quay or it takes an elevator in the shape of bubble being inserted in the ground. Arrived at the level of water, it enters a bubble, black and opaque. Inside this bubble of entry, a sphere seems in suspension. It shelters a changing room and the toilettes.
The black bubble joint two bubbles: the stainless first contains the kitchen, the second, wrapped of a lattice, is the restaurant room. The latter itself is connected to the bubble coffee made up of the same lattice. The intersections of the bubbles constitute the thresholds between the various functions: - Between the black bubble and the kitchen, it is the door of service. - Between the black bubble and the room of the restaurant, it is a simple passage intersected with structures. - Between the kitchen and the room, it is a counter making it possible to foresee the magic that is played in kitchen. - Between the restaurant and the coffee, it is a bar.
The coffee can also serve as extension to the restaurant. Terraces, made up by the same lattice, prolong the restaurant and the coffee which extend to the beautiful days with the outside, thus forming a kind of cellular network. Detached of this unit, the private living room is him also prolonged its own terrace. It is connected to the black bubble by a transparent tunnel. The envelope of the living room is animated of a spiral, alternating the opaque one and transparency, revealing this contact point between the matter, the air and water while ensuring a certain intimacy.
The Archipel is staff canteen at midday; the evening and the weekend it opens with the public. It can also receive seminars, private evenings, be used as place of conferences etc. Three types of boats come to supplement the Archipel. Black but transparent, their bubble is shaped to split water. They evoke the fast boats going up the rivers of Lyon. Smallest, shaped, is for four people with the maximum, it is the private boat. Second is for a dozen passengers, it is the boat taxi.
The last, squater, is on two levels. It can transport 70 people, it is a bus. All three are made up on the same principle: the dense shape out of black glass posed on the basis of existing hull. The Archipel thus consists of a series of motionless small islands that are the bubbles of the restaurant, the bar, of the private living room, but also of animated elements and mobiles that are the boats that form integral part of it. The sum of these bubbles forms a unit: a building able to be spread, to be propagated, and to disperse. It is a single body whose detached elements are the shuttles, the couriers, and the escorts.