“The Philharmonie is like a flagship event forming a harmonious relationship with the Parc de La Villette, the Cité de la Musique and the city’s ring road, the boulevard périphérique. The building and its lobbies offer terrestrial pleasure, a place where people can arrange to meet, spend hours browsing through the boutiques, enjoying a drink or a meal in bistros overlooking the garden, or reading in a lounge.
The auditorium evokes the immaterial nature of music and light, the audience being as though suspended on long balconies offering wider, deeper seating for an outstanding level of comfort. This suspension creates the impression of being surrounded by and immersed in the music and light. The “volumetric cyclorama” envelope can be lit selectively to accompany the pieces being performed. From time to time, the windows overlooking the park and the suburbs can be opened.
The enveloping auditorium is designed as a movement, a continuation, for pedestrians arriving through the park, towards the gently sloping lobbies, where, after passing through an intermediary space they enter the suspended balconies like cradles where they can curl up ready for departure on the musical journey that awaits them. The park extends right through to the auditorium: open, airy, atmospheric. The acoustic reflectors located within the 31,000 m3 of the auditorium’s volume enable great proximity between the audience and the stage (32 m from the front tip of the stage to the farthest row of seats), enveloping the audience of 2,400 in an intimate space.”
Jean Nouvel, 2007
The energy concept takes into account the hight requirements of acoustic and thermal comfort. It is based on displacement ventilation, radiant surfaces and renewable energy supply. The building is heated using the environmentally friendly district heating and with a heat pump based on geothermal heat.