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Soho La Chapelle in Paris, Brenac & Gonzalez & Associés, MOA Architecture, Photo: Stefan Tuchila

Living Upstairs, Working Downstairs: Soho La Chapelle in Paris

In architecture, the abbreviation Soho stands for Small Office, Home Office: a typology that links living space with offices featuring up to ten working spaces. It is one of the core components of a building complex planned by Brenac & Gonzalez and MOA Architecture in the La Chapelle urban-development area located on former railway grounds in the north of Paris. To 50-m towers with a total of 237 apartments - one by each of the two architects' offices involved - rise above a two-storey base with 20 Sohos, which has been designed by Brenac & Gonzalez. For the most part, the office spaces on the ground floor will attract small businesses from creative industries that can count on a certain number of walk-in customers. The apartments on the first upper storey are reserved for these tenants. With its generous ceiling height of 3.80 m, the ground floor is geared towards commercial use. In contrast, the architects distinguish the towers as a separate, private world.

In order to visually emphasize this idea and to prevent the towers from blocking each other’s views, they have been offset 45⁰ to their base structure. A public accessway that runs longitudinally through the complex connects the towers’ lobbies both with each other and with the Soho’s interior courtyard. On the first upper level, open galleries create a dense network of outdoor pathways.

A detailed print documentation is available in our issue DETAIL 3/2021 concerning the topic "Live and Work".

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Landscape architecture: Jean-Michel Rameau

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