The Partenord Habitat Plot in the Porte de Valenciennes neighborhood in Lille, France, eliminates the idea of a pollution-creating commute to work. In this design, office space, housing and retail areas are all integrated into one.

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A geometric, multi-story building viewed from the street.

Three sections of the building work together in an integrated design. The offices, headquarters and housing all share the same foundation. The housing section includes 50 units, and there are seven different office spaces. On either side of the headquarters, there are five retail units. The headquarters for Partenord Habitat, the Nord Department Public Housing Office, is a main feature of the space. It sits at the corner of the lot. There is also a car park with 232 underground parking spaces for the housing, office and retail areas.

Related: Experimental, ecological home is inspired by a tree in France

Trees partially obscuring the Partenord Habitat building.

The building has several distinct architectural features. Terracotta cladding was used for the exterior. Meanwhile, three sides of the building are made with reflective glass, creating a mirror-like shine.

A green patio area next to the glass facade of a building.

As for eco-friendly features, the building is built on them. Graywater will be recovered and stored, solar panels are integrated into the design and digital radiators help create an environment dedicated to optimizing electricity consumption. The heat recovery from the headquarters will provide for 80% of the winter heating needed for the housing units.

A green patio area next to the glass facade of a building.

There’s also a garden built right into the ground on the ground floor. This space also has support facilities, an atrium, a print shop and a bike shed. The triple-height atrium is right at the corner of the crossroads, the entrance to the headquarters.

A walkway leading up to a large building with a glass facade.

On the ninth floor terrace is the shared vegetable garden. This space faces the center of the design so that it’s protected from the wind. It’s accessible through shared areas. There is also ramp access for those with limited mobility. The 10th-floor terrace houses solar panels.

A white and wood spiral staircase leading down to the building's main level.

Created by the team at Coldefy, this innovative design won a 2017 competition for Partenord Habitat’s new headquarters.

+ Coldefy

Photography by Julien Lanoo