Located in a green belt, the Metz’In, the university restaurant at the Metz Technopôle, appears to rise out of its natural environment. It can accommodate nearly 500 guests and serve as many as 1,200 meals per day. Owing to its location at the epicentre of three engineering schools, the Metz’In was the subject of a particularly meticulous architectural concept. Its designers, the architects‘ practice, KL Architectes, based in Metz for 20 years, strive in each of their projects to create buildings that are inextricably linked with the surrounding landscape. This project is another brilliant example.

Project details

Project New build University Restaurant in Metz, France
Client Crous
Architects KL Architectes
Installation of the façade Salmon Group
Façade Argeton Barro® sun shade natural red 
Surface area 600 m²

University restaurant in Metz, France © Gregory Tachet

University restaurant in Metz, France © Gregory Tachet

University restaurant in Metz, France © Gregory Tachet

University restaurant in Metz, France © Gregory Tachet

University restaurant in Metz, France © Gregory Tachet

University restaurant in Metz, France © Gregory Tachet

University restaurant in Metz, France © Gregory Tachet

University restaurant in Metz, France © Gregory Tachet

University restaurant in Metz, France

University restaurant in Metz, France

University restaurant in Metz, France © Gregory Tachet

University restaurant in Metz, France © Gregory Tachet

The concept

Aiming to combine a futuristic approach with the integration into the landscape in their design concept for the Metz‘In, KL Architectes focused on simple materials and played with light by installing the Barro sun shade system from Argeton. The philosophy of a perfect combination of building and landscape is excellently expressed in this project.
Benoît Corneux, one of the practice‘s ten architects, confirms the basic tenets on which the building is constructed: “Aware of having to deal with an audience of engineers very susceptible to architectural identity and, as always, with our overriding concern for an integration into the landscape, we designed this edifice, which complies with HEQ and energyefficiency (BBC) standards, like a natural rise in the surrounding plain – with its façade growing straight out of the ground and a blend of simple and natural materials: wooden framework, green roof and terracotta.”

Sophisticated play with light

The roof gives the building certain inertia and encourages rainwater retention. The layout of the Argeton Barro sun shade plays an essential role. This “double skin”, the lower section of which is mobile, actually makes it possible to play with light according to the time of day and the time of year. It helps to break up the sunlight and optimises the brightness in the dining hall, whilst it still affords views to the surrounding area.
“Choosing terracotta is also, for us, a guarantee of durability. In addition, the “natural red” of the Barro brise-soleil beautifully blends in with the surrounding greenery”, explains the architect.

Barro sun shade as an aesthetic and functional solution

A large part of the installation was overseen and handled by the Salmon Group, a cladding specialist. For the Director of the Cladding Department, Thierry Groos, this project is exemplary: “We worked a great deal on this project, which required more than 6 months of in-house studies. The layout of the Argeton brick bars is one of the major finds of this project, both in aesthetic and technical terms. The brise-soleil is a high-end, long-lasting product. It provides excellent protection against the weather vagaries, as well as against impacts or other damage. Each element can be replaced individually.”

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