TERRE TERRE, Raw earth housing,
Paris XVIII, France

Raw Earth Construction Research Project as part of our Research Laboratory "Réalités"
Project owner: SAME
Floor area: 1.900m²
Cost: -
Certifications I Labels: Plan Climat Paris, E2C1

Renders : Jeudi.Wang

TERRE TERRE (informal French expression defining its own territory, roots) proposes a bio- and geo-based approach to construction focused on abundant local building resources. The integration of a slow tech process, essential in SAME’s architectural practice, involves the reuse of ancestral techniques with a reduced use of technology, aiming for optimal spatial and hygienic comfort.

Largely forgotten of contemporary architecture, the clay is abundant on the territory, easily reusable and very low energy consuming. It is a timeless and long-life building material which perfectly responds to the sustainable construction needs.

SAME has developed a foreshadowing project in Paris, which is the result of its internal research program, REALITES.

This Parisian housing program uses several techniques of earth construction, adapted to each different building layer:

.On the ground floor, the technique of double cast earth wall is used to permanently anchor the project on the site.
.Above ground, a wooden structure is filled with raw earth bricks and an earth coating finish.
.The lightweight wooden CLT structure of the attic is set back from the building's façade.
The slabs are made “à la Lyonnaise” and then filled of dry clay balls, allowing better acoustic and thermal performance.

The raw earth, applied on almost all the surfaces of the TERRE TERRE project, creates a healthy and stimulating environment for its users. Today, we spend more than 90% of our time in indoor spaces: this makes indoor air quality essential.  All components of a building, from the envelope to the temperature control systems, have a great influence on the users’ health.
Thanks to its excellent hygrothermal regulation properties, acoustic and sanitary comfort, and thermal inertia, this material guarantees a superior quality of life. The building regulates the temperature and humidity of the rooms, perspires, and interacts with users by establishing a physical connection with them.
This thermo-physical approach is combined with a spatial and architectural quality research, to guarantee luminous rooms, generous common spaces, and faithful architecture.

On the outside, the architecture of the façade reveals the sizing constraints of the different loads carried by the trumeaux. The expressive richness of the project, thanks to the ductility of the material and the corbelling, perfectly insert the project within the Parisian landscape. Its sober and elegant architecture highlights the base, the different constructive principles, the slabs, and the thinning of the structure in height.
TERRE TERRE in Paris, is a prototype housing and retail project that showcases the richness and elegance of one of the most eco-friendly and locally available materials. Adapted to our current lifestyles and low grey energy, it is infinitely recyclable. TERRE TERRE is a witness to SAME's know-how and a harbinger of new constructive possibilities in Paris.

This project represents the first implementation of the research initiated by our laboratory of experiments and reflections RÉALITÉS. The use of the earth as a building material finds its relevance in the scarcity of raw building materials.