The Jean Macé lycée, an old graduate school for young girls, is composed of historic buildings built in 1890 as well as several additions which appeared as needs evolved with time.
The original buildings form a coherent brick and stone ensemble with significant decorations on the Jean-Baptiste Lebas boulevard and an architectural language typical of teaching buildings at the end of the 19th century on the rue Gosselet. The lycée presents a remarkable facade on the planted boulevard. It is witness to the regional economic boom which started in the 1850s and modelled the town with the creation of large hausmanian avenues and the construction of opulent-looking buildings and monumental public buildings such as the Beaux-Arts museum or the Prefecture du Nord, a neighbor to the lycée’s architecture.
The project plans for the maintenance, restoration and transformation of the major historic buildings into a Hostel. With the monumental dispositions of the original buildings, the organisation of the ensemble remains readable despite several modifications and transformations.
The re-programmation of the Lycée Jean Macé into a hostel and housing is an extraordinary opportunity to integrate the building into the life of the neighborhood. In order to inscribe the homes in domestic daily practices, the ground floor spaces on the Jean-Baptiste Lebas boulevard in particular are activated. The generous original volumes welcome programs such as a brasserie, reception and co-working spaces. The entrance hall remains in its existing place, at the centre of the main facade, facing the Jean-Baptiste Lebas park. It leads to the walkway of the garden courtyard and connects the co-working spaces of the basement level with terraced steps which serve as informal meeting and waiting spaces. The brasserie restaurant is located at the angle of the boulevard and the rue Gosselet and articulates the transition between the rehabilitated spaces and the new extension in the thickness of the existing frontage.