Contemporary Architecture

Renzo Piano , Richard Rogers – Centre Georges Pompidou

Technology cannot be an end in itself but must aim at solving long term social and ecological problems.“

— Richard Rogers

The team’s architectural intention:

  • Building on the lines of an “evolving spatial diagram”.
  • Large degree of flexibility.
  • Facades that would be “information surfaces.“
  • To maximise spatial movement and flow

Design Phase:

  • A 3-level infrastructure housing the technical facilities and service areas,
  • A vast 7-level glass and steel superstructure, including a terrace and mezzanine floor

The style

  • revealed structure
  • exposed ducts
  • machine-precision aesthetics

Greater care given on how they work.


  • Exposed first Time
    • Blue – Air
    • Green – Fluids
    • Yellow – Electricity cables
    • Red – Movement and flow (elevators) and Safety (fire extinguishers).

Movement and flow:

  • Maximise functional movement and flow
  • Inside out.–Free from circulation and servicing
  • Attractive differences rather than soft-edged harmony.
  • The building portrays its own datum .
  • This public display of components—steel skeleton and diagonal
  • bracing as outcome of  interior  requirement.
  • Unobstructed and adaptable interior volumes

The exterior zone of the structural frame is there to provide tension forces outside the main volume’s external columns, pulling the cantilevered horizontal members downward to reduce the bending forces on the floor span.– eliminates the need for supporting columns across the interior span of 157 feet (53.3 meters) mechanical and air-conditioning services are then placed in the exoskeletal frame

Inside Pompidou :

  • Public access to the museum areas is not from the escalator tubes, as the building exterior seems to suggest, but from doors located centrally at the lower edge of the plaza
  • Double-height interior forum connects the street level with the plaza level in a single volume .
  • Plaza-level reception area also looks down into a performance-level basement where a theater and meeting rooms are situated.
  • An interior escalator takes visitors to the street level on the northwest corner of the building
  • Small lobby connects to elevators and the exterior escalator.– visitors can already look down 46 feet– In reality, the escalator serves only the mezzanine, level four, and level six–
  • Horizontal circulation platforms occur inside the frame — most of them restricted to staff access and emergency exits.

Critical Structural Issues – Achieving column free space

In plan, the superstructure of the building consists of three zones.

  • The middle zone contains the 157-foot clear span across the building interior between the main columns.
  • The outside two zones make up structural wall frames to support and cantilever.

Outer tension in the wall frame act to reduce the bending moments on the center of the span

As a Building:

  • Structural exhibitionism
  • A symbol of process and technology
  • Turning the building inside out was the most successfully realized architectural intention.
  • Static monumentalism is out; dynamic servicing and flexible floor space is in.
  • A ceiling isn’t required to shape a space, as many urban spaces. Our vision is more oriented to the horizontal than to the vertical.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

3 thoughts on “Renzo Piano , Richard Rogers – Centre Georges Pompidou”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s