Architecture of Lyon

The architect Tony Garnier has marked the East of Lyon with his touch: amongst many other creations, he was responsible for designing the Halle Tony Garnier (the old city slaughterhouses and now an auditorium for shows and exhibitions), the Gerland stadium, the Edouard Herriot Hospital at Grange Blanche (Lyon 3e), etc. The Tony Garnier Urban Museum pays honour to him in the form of 28 mural paintings.

The Part-Dieudistrict was createdin the 1970’s. It is the second biggest business district after La Défense in Paris. The 42-floor Part-Dieu tower, symbol of the district, will be soon accompanied by two new towers : Tour Oxygène and Tour In City

At the beginning of the 1990’s, Renzo Plano began building the Cité Internationale, with its imposing Convention Centre. Located between the river Rhone and the Parc de la Tête d’Or, this is a new neighbourhood within the city. Besides the Convention Centre and its 3,000 seat amphitheatre (inaugurated in June 2006), a multitude of services are to be found: cinemas, restaurants, hotels, the Modern Art Museum, a casino, etc.

During the same period, in 1990’s, Calatrava designed the high-speed rail station at the Saint Exupery airport, a magnificent bird with glass, metal and concrete wings, whilst Buren redeveloped the Place des Terreaux and drew the convolutions for the Celestins car park. Mario Botta planned the Maison du Livre de l’Image et du Son(The House of books, images and sounds) in Villeurbanne

Lyon, a contemporary city

To the north of Lyon, the Cité Internationale, designed by Renzo Piano and completed in 2006, is a turning point of architectural renewal in the city. This district prefigures the focus on sustainability in future urban development in Lyon, as does the Confluence district south of the Presqu’île. As early as 2003, this district’s 150 ha began to evolve, with the rehabilitation of the former buildings in Rambaud Port (Customs house, “Les Salins”, “La Sucrière”). In this eco-friendly district, architects are remoulding the city: modern, colourful and in the vanguard, as with the orange Cube by Jakob and MacFarlane and the Musée des Confluences by Coop Himmelb(l)au.
In Part-Dieu, the 2nd largest business centre after La Défense in Paris, Lyon’s skyline is being built up around the “Crayon”, the Oxygène and Incity towers.
Finally, in Givors, Les Etoiles by Jean Renaudie were awarded the 20th Century Heritage label in 2003. This geometric, star-shaped district is one of the Utopies Réalisées (Utopia Achieved). As are the sky-scrappers in Villeurbanne, considered ultra-modern architectural ensembles at the time, that provided both social housing and community facilities.

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