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Paris, France

UNESCO

Arch. Jacques Duflos + CALQ Studio

Corporate room equipped with compact and comfortable seats and built-in audio system

 

Hall I of UNESCO's headquarters in Paris, the largest hall in the central building, is where  international conferences with ministers and secretaries of state are held. With a capacity of about 1,000 people, it houses the most important decisions of this international organization. The hall, inaugurated in 1958 like the rest of the building, had been rehabilitated on several occasions, but through the years it had lost the spirit of its creators Marcel Breuer, Pier Luigi Nervi and Bernard Zehrfuss.

The renovation sought to recover its original architecture, while carrying out an update on comfort, new technologies and security. For this reason, and over the course of several months, a team of architects led by the institution's chief architect, Jacques Duflos, together with the CALQ study, worked to improve all these aspects. Although the iconic seats designed by Eero Saarinen on the main floor were not replaced, the amphitheatre seats, 526 in total, were installed by Figueras.

Challenge of the project

Figueras was selected through a public competition, since it was the only seat manufacturer that fulfilled all the demanding requirements. The company used all its experience to equip the amphitheatre of the hall, with capacity for 526 seats. The seat chosen is the compact MiniSpace with an incorporated lectern. The main challenge of the project consisted in offering a seat of maximum comfort for a hall of very tight measures and narrow distance between rows. In addition, each seat had to integrate a translation terminal, requiring a high level of execution and precision in the installation.

Product Supplied

For a project with the need to accommodate tight space and high level of comfort, the only suitable model was the 5067 MiniSpace with lectern. The seat selected only occupies 15 cm once folded, but offers unequalled comfort. All seats had to be arranged in narrow steps of varying width according to their position.

The proper distribution, coupled with the combination of backrests arranged at angles of 10° and 15° fitting row widths between 736 cm and 763 cm respectively, allowed Figueras to place all the 526 seats required. Upholstered in a special fabric of the Kvadrat brand - the same one that upholsters the legendary chair of Saarinen –occupants can receive simultaneous translations thanks to the integrated communication terminals. The experience of the Figueras installation team and the excellence in the planning guaranteed the right solution delivered and installed within the required timeframe.

  Description

UNESCO in Paris, France; project fitted with 5067 Minispace seats for Public Buildings

Technical data

  • Name: UNESCO
  • Location: Paris, France
  • Year of development: 2017
  • Architecture: Jacques Duflos + CALQ Studio
  • Segments: Auditorium, Conference & Congress|Public Buildings|
  • Seats: 5067 Minispace
  • Original architecture: Marcel Breuer, Pier Luigi Nervi, Bernard Zehrfuss
 
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