Segments in this Video

Introduction: Roissy 1 (01:03)


With increased air travel in the 1960s, the French government under Charles de Gaulle, commissioned architect Paul Andreu to build a north Paris airport.

Paul Andreu (01:06)

Airports were usually built by engineers, but young Andreu was chosen to design a functional airport within a budget.

Innovative Circular Design (01:47)

Andreu broke with the Orly tradition of glass walls and spectators to create a circular concrete building surrounded by satellites for airplanes.

Interchange Between the Car and the Plane (02:55)

The building rests in a deep basin with only the upper half level having runways. Pillars support the upper level above the access and parking levels.

Terminal Levels (01:35)

The terminal is below the car park, with different levels for departures and arrivals. A mezzanine level provides transfer for continuing passengers.

Rectangles and Triangles (02:00)

Black bands on the floor echoes the geometry of the building, forming rectangles and triangles. Andreu describes his geometric work.

Circulatory Traffic Flow (02:52)

To enhance orientation, traffic flow, and provide light, Andreu hollowed out a center circle of glass. Aluminum and glass tubes cross the circle to access baggage and transfer levels.

Satellites (03:38)

Roissy works like a giant round-about for airplanes. Planes connect to the two level satellites with lower level baggage handling and upper level passenger waiting rooms.

Airport Aesthetics (01:43)

The airport reveals monochrome concrete in all its forms. Roissy 1 is an example of the French tradition of untreated concrete.

Andreu's Parental Relationship to Roissy 1 (04:25)

French authorities added glass screens to Andreu's open- air concept and transformed areas into shopping centers. The ceiling and inner tubes still conform to Andreu's original concept.

Roissy 2 (01:16)

Roissy 1 was to be the first stage of a monumental site with 5 circular terminals, but Roissy 2 had a linear organization around the roadway.

Credits: Roissy 1: Architectures—Achievements in Modern Architecture (00:28)

Credits: Roissy 1: Architectures—Achievements in Modern Architecture

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Roissy 1: Architectures—Achievements in Modern Architecture

Part of the Series : Architectures—Achievements in Modern Architecture
DVD (Chaptered) Price: $149.95
DVD + 3-Year Streaming Price: $224.93
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Roissy 1 embodied the aspirations of modern architecture. It was built during the initial era of mass travel, a pre-crisis era that revered progress and dreams of high speed and that witnessed the first appearances of airport architecture. People would come to Roissy 1 to admire, no longer the planes, but the architecture. Paul Andreu was the main player in this revolution. He was 29 years old at the time. It was his first construction and the very beginning of a long series of about fifty platforms throughout the world that were to make him into one of the greatest 20th century airport architects.

Length: 26 minutes

Item#: BVL65349

ISBN: 978-1-60057-660-7

Copyright date: ©2008

Closed Captioned

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