MéMo – Médiathèque de Monein

MéMo – Médiathèque de Monein

Architect
Oeco architectes
Location
64360 Monein, France | View Map
Project Year
2018
Category
Libraries
Stories By
Oeco architectes

Cupa Pizarras
Franck Brouillet

MéMo – Médiathèque de Monein

Oeco architectes as Architects

The project is located in the rural landscapes of southern France, in a city called Monein. The building takes place on the main square near the town hall. The idea is to create an architectural happening that can really play the role of a flagship in the city.

 

Our strategy when designing this building was to use and preserve the urban and architectural context to create a contemporary architecture, which dialogues with its historical environment. Because it is a public building, its architecture must correspond to its function. Using the esthetic codes of the actual town houses around the main square, its contemporary architecture makes the media library become an urban landmark of the town square. While the building is aligned to the adjacent houses, a gap is created on the ground floor to create a porch and an access to the forecourt.

 

To create the dialogue between historic and contemporary, we decided to preserve the existing barn, which becomes the background of the forecourt. Inside, from the lobby we can see the reading room that is fully open on the garden. In the southern part of the parcel, this garden offers the right amount of light and a calm atmosphere for the reading room on the ground floor. Furthermore, the reading room located on the second floor is open on the entire width of the facade and offers an impressive view on Monein.

 

From the outside, this horizontal window creates a hyphen between the two adjoining buildings. The extension wraps around the renovated barn, the existing stonewalls assert the history of the barn within the media library and organize the different spaces. The double heights link the two floors of the Media library. This public building has to be attractive so the forecourt is given to the city. It animates the main square, and makes the inhabitants want to enter the facility.

 

The cooking activity room is on the front of the building. The architectural intervention respects the existing barn and contrasts with it. It creates a dialogue between new and old architecture; between wood, black metal, concrete and the existing stone walls. Theses warm materials develop the ownership of the building for the users. The building is a convivial place for social interactions; everything is made to creating a building where users feel at home.

Media Library in Monein, France

Cupa Pizarras as Manufacturers

With a population of 5,000, the town of Monein plays a major role in the development of the culture of the Lacq-Orthez region. This media library project was established in 2011 and launched in 2016, and it stands at the heart of the village to place the emphasis on culture.

Tradition and Vanguard

The media library is located in the Henri Lacabanne square, just where the ancient ‘Maison de Laü’ stood before. The building was bought by the Council, which opened a public tender in 2016 to reform it.

“We were the only ones who proposed to maintain the original shed, and that decision probably was key to the election of our project”, explains Claire Furlan, member of the OECO Architect’s agency. “We thought that finding the coherence with the village and the Bearnaise houses surrounding the square was key”, continues.

The new media library has been conceived as an extension of the public square. A large window allows the viewing of the interior and highlights the shed, with its typical entrance arch, placed at the back of the plot.

Combining materials

The architectonic part brings together different materials and combines perfectly tradition and modernity. The old stoned shed has been preserved, adding new openings with a concrete frame and a wooden skeleton. A contemporary part embraces the old building with a metallic structure, all covered by slate roofing.

“The slate allowed us to be coherent with the surroundings. Also, it’s also important for us to add value to the know-how and the local logic to achieve an integral construction”, recognizes the architect.

The media library is covered with dark slate, matching perfectly with the façade. “The company gave us some advice about the material’s size and quality”, confesses Claire Furlan. The enterprise Da Silva carried out the roofing job in just three months, when a total of 13.000 slates were used with a hook fixing method.

An original repertoire

Open since the beginning of the year, the 550 square meters of the new media library are fully equipped and adapted to the current needs of the residents: it’s a place open to the culture but alsoa space for citizens to socialize.

“We wanted to make visible the activities developed inside the building to encourage people to participate. Therefore, the main façade’s window acts as a nexus of union between inside and outside and highlights the consultation room under the slate roof”, explains the architect.

Gastronomy is the thematic focus of the media library. The ground floor is occupied by a kitchen, where people take courses and the local associations promote the regional culinary heritage, like Jurançon’s wines and Ossau-Iraty’s cheese.

Project Credits
Products used in this project
Product Spec Sheet

ElementBrandProduct name
ManufacturersCupa Pizarras
Product Spec Sheet
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