Gallery: Gigantic Bubbly Vitam’Parc Sports Center Pops Up in France

 
Vitam’Parc is a health, sports, and leisure center in Neydens, France that encapsulates a range of facilities within gigantic bubbly transparent domes! Located just a few minutes away from Geneva and immersed within the undulating hills of the French countryside, the center hosts sports areas, a hotel, and commercial space. Designed by Spanish architects L35 and covering a whopping 25 square miles, the center believes in the value of building good relationships with people and providing quality products and services that have a positive impact on health and a low impact on the earth.

L35‘s main architectural goal was to design a set of shells that would enclose the different areas of the complex and fit organically within the landscape, despite the project’s large-scale dimensions. The architects called upon Reynaers to create an undulating, bubbly space that fits with the countryside’s typography. The structure features a frame made from wood and recycled aluminum, and it’s covered with a polymer called ethylene tetrafluoroethylene (aka ETFE).

ETFE is a plastic material that we’ve seen previously used in the Eden Project’s domes, but the Vitam’Parc is the first one to use the technology in France.

ETFE can be considered a green material because its transparency permits 90% of daylight to enter the building, which saves on energy use and creates the perfect atmosphere for swimmers. The building also offers mountain views and an almost outdoor atmosphere while preserving a warm interior environment.

In addition to a huge large swimming pool, the center holds a fun water park, a well-being space, a sport and leisure zone, and a shopping center. Run by Migros France SAS, Vitam’Parc has activated the area’s social and structural development in a big way.

As the first leisure and well-being center in the area, the park created more than 300 jobs and will enable more than 600,000 visitors to enjoy their favorite activities in any kind of weather. If visitors get hungry after swimming or indoor mountain climbing, they can enjoy a healthy meal in one of the restaurants within the shopping area.

Due to its sustainable building principles and the way it creates harmonious relationships with the environment, the Vitam’Parc in Neydens has been awarded with the French HQE certificate (Haute Qualité Environnementale). Congratulations!

+ Vitam’Parc

+ L35

Photo © Nicolás Pinzón

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