La Halle SERNAM à Paris
Fiche DOCOMOMO


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DoCoMoMo international register
____________________________

1 . IDENTITY OF BUILDING OR GROUP OF BUILDINGS

current name of building :
variant or former name :
number and name of street :
town :
country :
Halle SERNAM de la gare Paris-Austerlitz
Halle Freyssinet / Messageries d'Austerlitz
Boulevard Vincent Auriol
Paris                              code : 75013
France

CURRENT OWNER

name :
adress :
telephone :
fax :

Société nationale des chemins de fer français (SNCF)

CONSERVATION PROTECTION

type :

date :

 

AGENCY RESPONSIBLE FOR PROTECTION

name :
address :
telephone :
fax :

 

 

2. HISTORY OF BUILDING

commission brief : Building covering the dispatching operations of goods and marchandises for the Paris-Orléans Railway Company

architectural designer : Eugène Freyssinet (1879-1962), engineer

other designer :

consulting engineers :

contractors  : Etablissements Limousin

CHRONOLOGY

competition date:
commission date :
design period :
duration of site work :
opening :

1927
1927
january-june 1927
start :
1927
1929




finish :
1929

PRESENT STATE OF BUILDING

current use : idem

current condition : excellent

summary of restoration or other works carried out, with dates : no restoration carried out since 1929 .

 

3. DOCUMENTATION / ARCHIVES

written records, correspondance, etc : Centre des archives de la SNCF, Le Mans, France

drawings, photographs, etc : idem

other sources, film video, etc : none

principal publications (chronological order) :
Blondel, « Note au sujet des travaux d'agrandissement de la gare Paris-Austerlitz », Revue générale des chemins de fer, 1929
Bowie Karen, « A Note on the « Paris-RiveGauche » Development Project : Opportunities and Challenges for Industrial Heritage », Industrial Patrimony resources, practices, cultures , 10 (2003).
Dantin Charles, « Les nouvelles halles du service des messageries de la gare d'Austerlitz », Le Génie civil, 11 janvier 1930
Nogue Nicolas, « Les messageries d'Austerlitz », AMC-Le Moniteur architecture, n°75, novembre 1996.

 

4. DESCRIPTION OF BUILDING

Built in armed concrete, the building is 310 m long. It is comprised of three longitudinal vaults, in thin cylindrical concrete shells, covering a scope from 16 to 25 m.

 

5. REASONS FOR SELECTION AS A BUILDING OF OUTSTANDING AND UNIVERSAL VALUE

1. technical appraisal :
The lightness of the structure (vaults and pilars) is outstanding for this period. It enables a remarkable natural lightning of inner spaces. The concrete used is of the highest quality for this time : it is employed with the new technique of vibrating moulds that Freyssinet first experimented for the construction of the famous Orly hangars (1922-1923 ; destroyed). The main technical innovation lies in the prestressed canopies in thin concrete shells hanging from the façades. They are the first structures of this type. Freyssinet designed them while he was preparing his famous patent for prestressed concrete (1928).

2. social appraisal :

3. artistic and aesthetic appraisal :
Thanks to its length and the lightness of the concrete structure, the inner space of the building is of breathtaking beauty as well as the proportions of the construction.

4. evidence of canonic status (local, national, international) :
The building became a national reference for all similar constructions after its achievement. The articles mentioned above (Revue générale des chemins de fer et Le Génie civil) prove it. It also had an international publicity in the Bulletin de l'association internationale du Congrès des chemins de fer (1929) for its prestressed canopies, a technique that became universal since then.

5. evaluation as a reference point in architectural history and in relation to comparable buildings :
This building is one of the first constructions designed by Freyssinet using the revolutionary concept of prestressed concrete.

 

6. PHOTOGRAPHS AND VISUAL RECORDS

1. original visual records :

2. recent photographs and survey drawings :
 

Rapporteur : Nicolas Nogue
Direction scientifique: Fabienne Chevallier

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