Max Weber Building / Paris West Nanterre La Défense University

21316 Last modified by the author on 07/10/2016 - 15:15
  • Building Type : School, college, university
  • Construction Year : 2014
  • Delivery year : 2016
  • Address 1 - street : 200 avenue de la République 92000 NANTERRE CéDEX, France
  • Climate zone : [Cbc] Mild, dry winter, warm and wet summer.

  • Net Floor Area : 4 904 m2
  • Construction/refurbishment cost : 11 271 905 €
  • Number of Pupil : 124 Pupil
  • Cost/m2 : 2298.51 €/m2
  • Primary energy need
    51.6 kWhep/
    (Calculation method : RT 2012 )
Energy consumption
Economical buildingBuilding
< 50A
51 à 90B
91 à 150C
151 à 230D
231 à 330E
331 à 450F
> 450G
Energy-intensive building

Max Weber Building is a pioneer building that reviews in depth the standards of the office building, and uses environmental requirements as a motor of innovation and architectural design. Its 5 levels are 100% wooden structure, including elevator shafts and stairways, while the office space - Flexible and scalable - are free of false ceilings and raised floors false. This passive building without air conditioning, is naturally ventilated through an architectural device that manifests roof by 25 ventilation stacks of 3.70 meters high.

Sustainable development approach of the project owner

The University of Nanterre wanted to incorporate a High Environmental Quality for all of its operations on campus. This should incorporate the requirements of the master plan of the campus and the climate plan of the city of Nanterre. He was asked the project management team to integrate this approach to environmental quality early in the design phase and reasoning about the full life of the building (production / use and exploitation / deconstruction).

Targeted HQE targets are:

3 Targeted levels: Base (B) High Performance (P), Very High Performance (HP)

01 "harmonious relationship with the immediate environment" HP
02 "Integrated choice of products, systems and construction processes": P
03 'Chantier low nuisance "HP

04 "Energy Management": P
05 "Water Management": P
06 "Waste management activities": B
07 "Maintenance - Sustainability of environmental performance": P

08 'Hygrothermal comfort ": P
09 "Acoustic comfort": P
10 "Visual comfort": B
11 "Olfactory comfort": B

12 "sanitary quality of spaces": B
13 "Health Air Quality": P
14 "Water Quality": B

The environmental approach of the client was ambitious and project management went beyond that demand, particularly on the target 2 (integrated choice of products ...), No. 4 (power management ), No. 7 (maintenance, sustainability ...), No. 10 (visual comfort) and No. 12.

Architectural description

A strong environmental ambition presided over the design of Max Weber building. It helped re-examine in depth the nature of the office space available to researchers and propose new architectural tracks.
Office buildings are indeed too often ultra standardized products that often find their identity in a formal bidding at the façades and decoration.

Max Weber building was designed to avoid, thanks to a strong environmental ambitions, the trivialization of workspaces for researchers. This is indeed an atypical building, completely wooden, passive, and with natural ventilation in winter and summer. The materials used are used where they are most adapted and appear as what in the truth of their joints. For this, the false ceilings and air conditioning were banned from offices and controlled mechanical ventilation. Contrary to common practice, the structure is not concrete but entirely of wood, which visible, highly branded interior spaces and gives them a unique and warm character. The hallways are not blind but enlightened course and views to the outside. The three cages of wooden stairs also bathe in natural light with wide views.

Large office windows consist of two opening, allowing occupants to customize the management of their atmosphere.
The floors raw concrete, covered with linoleum, contribute to the inertia and summer comfort in the premises without the need to use an air conditioner.

To achieve this, the problems related to acoustics and integration of networks have thus been designed in a different logic, very early, at the architectural competition, along with the project structure and organization of spaces.

Retaining the architectural style fits in harmony with the existing buildings, and is distinguished by a simple volume, slightly cut the corners gentle terraces and outdoor spaces in piles. Its aluminum siding hints from the outside, thanks to generous openings regularly arranged, the strong presence of wood in the interior spaces, while large chimneys on the roof signal a singular ventilation.
Here, the architectural expression of the building is marked by the contrast between gloss and smoothness of the outer skin of aluminum and matte nature, organic and warm wood used for interior spaces.

Building users opinion

Returns from the Head of the University's heritage: it speaks of a building seductive effect with its users. People completely appropriate the building and say hello to each other! The stairs are a real architectural object that impresses.

See more details about this project



    Université Paris Ouest Nanterre La Défense

    Patrick Bobin

    Contracting Authority

    Contractor representative


    Chloé Ader

    Representative of the Paris West University Nanterre La Défense

    Assistance to the Contracting Authority

    SLH -

    Sophie Brindel Beth


    Other consultancy agency

    Cabinet MIT

    Pierre MIT


Contracting method

Macro packages

Type of market

Design and implementation

Energy consumption

  • 51,60 kWhep/
  • 71,50 kWhep/
  • RT 2012

    Heating: 20.00 kWhEP / m² / year
    Cooling: 0.20 kWhEP / m² / year
    Hot Water: 5.40 kWhEP / m² / year
    Lighting: 13.10 kWhEP / m² / year
    Auxiliaries: 12.80 kWhEP / m² / year

Real final energy consumption

    32,21 kWhef/

Envelope performance

  • 0,66 W.m-2.K-1
  • Timber fram wall (wool insulation of wood and stone wool): 0.150 W / (m²K)
    Terrace facility: 0.222 W / (m²K)Roof - Terrace: 0.155 W / (m²K)
    Floor below: 0.152 W / (m²K)
    Carpentry wood / aluminum: Uw: 1.3 W / (m²K)


  • 1,01


    • Urban network
    • Individual electric boiler
    • Canadian well
    • Natural ventilation
    • Free-cooling
    • Double flow heat exchanger
    • Canadian well
    • No renewable energy systems

    The hot water needed for health is produced by individual balloons to rapid heating.

Smart Building

    Steering of overventilation

Urban environment

  • 5 150,00 m2
  • 23,00 %
  • 2 000,00
  • Max Weber building is located within the grounds of the University of Paris Ouest Nanterre, large campus with different buildings of concrete and metal are evidence of French academic architecture built from the 60s Located along the alley of the University, west Campus, the land adjoins the building's entrance.




    Mme Laetitia Wajs-Sourimant

    HVAC, électricité / ventilation, cooling

    Acoustic self-adjusting air intake Natural ventilation2 versions-have-been installed in the project. Version Regulatory hygienic fixed rate and motorized release for overventilation

    Perfect integration in the frame joineryPossible action by users for starting the-ventilation via a push buttonEasy maintenance from the inside

    Hybrid extractor


    [email protected]

    HVAC, électricité / ventilation, cooling

    The hybrid extractor allows:
    - Increase the static pressure in the natural network,
    - To take over when flows will be insufficient via a low energy mechanical extractor

    Integration into an air extraction chimney located on the roofVisual signal buildingLow maintenance product

    Canadian Well


    Pierre Caquelin - 01 47 17 14 23

    HVAC, électricité / ventilation, cooling

    Canadian wells with underground pipe network

    Earnings comfort and heating costsBetter thermal conductivity than other materialsBetter durability and air quality

    Wooden panels CLT


    Michel DIDIER - 03 29 52 95 21

    Structural work / Structure - Masonry - Facade

    Cross laminated timber

    Speed of implementationHighlighting of wood structure

    Joinery Wood / Aluminium


    M. Jacques Bourges - 01 30 72 52 84

    Finishing work / Exterior joinery - Doors and Windows

    External Joinery Wood / Aluminium

    Quality of the joinery

Water management

  • 315,00 m3
  • Following the request of the project ownership, a volume of 20m3 recovery of surface water is intended for watering green spaces. These needs over a period of 6 months, the mastery of work proposed to connect the tank to the health of so to cover these needs by building unsafe water when there is no need for watering.The study shows that the 20m3 storage tank allows, if it is connected all year on the toilet, to cover 34% of health needs to be an annual saving of drinking water 315m3.

GHG emissions

  • 4,93 KgCO2/m2/an
  • Thermic Regulation Calculation

Reasons for participating in the competition(s)

Une structure 100% bois y compris cages d'ascenseurs et d'escaliers- des plafonds de bureaux en bois massif, sans faux plafonds- un bâtiment de type passif équipé d'un dispositif de ventilation naturelle assistée- un bâtiment non climatisé- un bâtiment modulaire, flexible et évolutif​- lumière naturelle dans l'ensemble des circulations : couloirs, cages d'escaliers...
le choix du bois répond à des considérations écologiques. Le bois est en effet un matériau biosourcé, renouvelable, recyclable, qui absorbe du carbone au cours de sa vie et le stocke dans la construction.

Building candidate in the category

Bas Carbone

Bas Carbone

Coup de Coeur des Internautes

Coup de Coeur des Internautes

Green Building Solutions Awards 2016

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pascal gontier


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Green Building Solutions Awards 2016