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Metal mesh cladding on Basel's new sports and cultural centre gives a unified look
12 May 2016 . BY Kate Corney
Each metal mesh-clad roof is made of two sloping elements to catch the sun
Located in Saint-Louis, Alsace, France in the inner suburb of Basel, the Forum is a new facility designed to host sporting and cultural events, designed by Manuelle Gautrand Architecture.

A metal mesh, supplied by Métal Déployé, is used as an exterior cladding throughout, giving the project an original, unified feel.

The cladding of the roofs and facades is entirely made of the copper-coloured expanded metal, giving this building a strong identity and making it a new landmark for the city of Saint-Louis and its inhabitants.

Around 10 000 square metres of the SUPREME 200XXL ‘brilliant effect’ powder coated metal mesh are used in the project.

Manuelle Gautrand Architecture says the modular aspects of the build all fit in a “unique writing” because they are all covered with the “same principles of forms, materials and openings”.

The roof of each section is systematically made of two slopes, inspired by the design of the roofs in the surroundings, alternating the orientation of the folded faces sometimes North-South, sometimes South-West, in order to capture a light each time different.

Created to give modularity and flexibility, the design also involves strong contrasts between smaller reception, offices and lockers spaces, and the Festival Hall and the Great Hall - two main spaces of the project.

The smaller spaces are placed around the edges of the larger, central spaces, and all 13 separate spaces are connected to each other like a single puzzle.

The surrounding area is characterised by residential, offices and workshops for small companies, as well as a kindergarten and a primary school.
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