A rendering of renovations for the CDER building in Champagne, France, featuring a green double facade. Courtesy of OuyOut/SAT Manager.

Magnificent Metal Monday travels to Champagne, France, where ancient history meets modern sustainability. Instead of tearing down and rebuilding, check out this “green renovation of a midcentury monstrosity.” As featured this week in Redshift by Autodesk, Aurélien Leriche, architect manager of Paris-based firm OuyOut, saw an opportunity to propose a green renovation for CDER, a management and accounting association, when they wanted to expand their offices in Épernay, the capital of Champagne.

CDER originally sought to tear down a building adjacent to its offices — a blocky 1960s structure infamous in the area — but wanted to align with the region’s values, so considered this less costly alternative that could bring the village eyesore into harmony with its surroundings. 

In 2001, the region’s winemakers pledged to embrace modern sustainability practices and by doing so, the wineries now treat 100% of all wastewater and recover and reuse 90% of Champagne byproducts and 100% of waste. The wineries also reduced the use of vine-protection products by 50% and lowered their per-bottle carbon footprint by 15%.

The CDER building’s east facade before renovation. Courtesy of OuyOut/SAT Manager.

Architect Leriche says, “The goal is to have this building living for 40, 60 … maybe more than 60 years.” Renovation eliminates waste generated by demolition and the removal of old materials and offers “carbon avoidance” or sidestepping the carbon released during new construction. “As we discussed energy consumption and performance, CDER realized that their town was in a region undergoing an ecological transition,” Leriche says. “The goal became making the building very energy efficient.”

Rebuilding the structure will begin in early 2020, with estimated completion in mid-2021. To maximize sustainability, the architects needed to restore and maintain as many elements of the existing structure as possible, limiting new materials while addressing modern thermal regulations and environmental requirements. The architects plan to use a double-skin facade recalling the vine-covered pergolas of Greece or Italy. The double facade is a thin metal structure comprising 80-centimeter-wide vertical mesh strips that will support the vine. This structure is spaced one meter out from the facade and features large flower pots that will allow the vine to grow at each level of the building. Vegetation will grow on a new outer layer to create a living building that provides both insulation and sun protection.

The renovated building aims for greater efficiency while paying homage to its milieu. So come 2021, perhaps that bubbly your sipping may taste even purer given the increased air quality as a result of this nearby green building.

For the complete article and other articles on sustainability, check out Redshift by Autodesk.

To learn more about how metal panels play a role in building construction, be sure to attend one of the education sessions at METALCON 2019 in Pittsburgh, October 16-18. Click HERE for a full conference schedule. Come for the exhibits but stay for the education! REGISTRATION is open – REGISTER TODAY!