[TESTIMONIAL] PIERRE OGOR, MAYOR OF GUILERS (29)
“An innovative design that offers great value for money.”
Guilers, a town in Finistère with a population of around 8,500, has just acquired two buildings with canvas roofing, built by SMC2: a boulodrome (boules court) and an athletics hall. Pierre Ogor, the town’s mayor, presents these two structures and their architectural features.
Why did you decide to build these two facilities?
In 40 years, our community has grown from 2,000 to 8,500 inhabitants and our ageing infrastructure no longer meets the new expectations of our very dynamic sports association sector. After making investments for young children, for the elderly, and for a new music school, not forgetting the restructuring of the schools and the renovation of the sports facilities, our inter-communal club, which has 700 members, had to invest in a covered athletics facility, because we are in a region where it rains occasionally (laughs). As for the boulodrome, the boules players told us that they would like to have a partly covered playing area and we agreed.
Why did you choose this building process?
At the beginning we had defined several criteria, such as an innovative design that fits perfectly into our environment, taking into account sustainability aspects and, of course, that is good value for money in order to be accessible for our budget. On this last point, it is important to emphasise that athletics halls built in traditional buildings, such as those located near us (Saint-Brieuc, Rennes or Nantes), cost 10 to 15 million euros. However, our municipality did not have the financial means to invest in such equipment.
Together with our architect, we visited several facilities, and we really liked this type of building with a wooden frame and a textile membrane roof. The latter provides excellent brightness throughout the day, avoiding the need for excessive artificial light. The rounded shape of the building, the white colour of the fabric and the visuals of athletes in motion at the bottom of the structure perfectly illustrate the innovative concept we were looking for.
Finally, we opted for the same type of building for the boulodrome in order to create a link between them, even though the two facilities are not on the same site.
Can you describe the two structures?
Measuring 97 x 46 m, the athletics hall has four pieces of canvas roofing (6,000 m2 in total) with a clear-span structure. The venue has a 200 m track with 5 lanes and 8 lanes for the speed events (50 and 60 m), as well as stands with 380 seats. The site also has one track for the high jump, two for the long jump and two for the triple jump, as well as the pole vault and shot-put areas. In addition, there is an outdoor javelin and discus area. This athletics hall is approved for departmental and regional competitions. The investment represents a budget of €3.3 million including VAT.
The boulodrome has a surface area of 38 x 40 m (playing area 35 x 33 m) and covers one third of the existing courts. The roof structure has a clear span of 33 m.
What is the initial feedback?
Unfortunately, given the current situation, the school children were only able to use the hall for one day. As for the club, only top-level athletes, as part of their individual training, have access to the site and the initial feedback is particularly good. We are therefore eager to see the hall fully employed by all users. In any case, it is in great demand and will be very busy.
At the same time, we are also repeatedly asked by other local authorities and some athletics leagues to visit the building. We can see that this is a concept that is very popular and that can be an interesting option for hosting many different sports disciplines.