The Familistère in Guise was built by J.-B. A. Gaudin between 1859 and 1884. The organization and the architectural form of this vast complex is directly inspired by Fournier’s Phalanstère.
It is composed around two axis, one dedicated to knowledge (North-South) and one dedicated to work (East-West). The latter is directly linked to the factory by a bridge over the Oise river. The site comprises different types of housing, service buildings as well as places dedicated to teaching and leisure.
The three housing units, the Social Palace and its two wings, are each organized around a central covered courtyard, surrounded by gangways. They face, on the south front, the buildings dedicated to services, teaching and leisure, the library and theatre… and benefit from gardens to the north.
The Familistère was severely damaged during the First World War: the left wing is almost completely destroyed. Rebuilt in 1925 according to original plans, but using different materials with an important use of metal and concrete.