University of Chicago Center in Paris

The academic building’s vertically-articulated stone façade selectively opens and closes, revealing public activities while densifying around more private spaces for study and research.

Paris, France

Under Construction

SEMAPA with ICADE and the University of Chicago

In Collaboration with
PARC Architectes

Educational, Mixed-Use Residential

2,365 m2 / 25,460 sf

Targeting low carbon, LEED Silver and Well Silver core & shell, HQE niveau « très performant », Label BiodiverCity and Biosourcé


The University of Chicago John W. Boyer Center in Paris Project will create a new hub for scholarship and cultural exchange in Paris’ rapidly-developing 13th arrondissement. The full development, comprising an academic center for the University of Chicago and a mixed-use residential building, will bring vitality to its neighborhood with biodiverse green spaces and an architecture that weaves the block—both physically and intellectually—into the fabric of the city.

University spaces are organized into a vertical campus whose classrooms wrap around a central, daylit interior that culminates in a biodiverse roof garden. A visual and material interplay between the buildings evoke the warp and weft of a textile. Lush outdoor green spaces atop and between the structures provide places for socializing, study, and rest as well as habitat for urban wildlife.

In alignment with the ambitious environmental standards of the City of Paris and SEMAPA, the design minimizes carbon footprint while optimizing energy performance. Its combination of active and passive strategies includes the use of locally-sourced and sustainably-harvested materials.

The central staircase of the academic building acts like a vertical campus quadrangle, connecting spaces both physically and visually.

Featuring an amphitheater, great room (shown here), laboratory classroom and active gardens on the ground floor and rooftop, the expanded Center will more than double the space of the current building, providing unrivaled opportunities for dynamic research and learning.

To promote a lively exchange between Parisians and University students and faculty, the academic, public, and residential programs are strategically located in relation to one another and connected to outdoor green spaces and RER transit.

The design’s environmental strategies minimize carbon footprint and optimize energy performance. Outdoor green spaces—the central courtyard, rooftop gardens, and shared terraces—cultivate biodiversity and encourage social connection.

PARC Architectes, associate architect

ICADE, owner & developer

SEMAPA, owner

University of Chicago, owner

Egis Group, structural, HVAC, and envelope engineer

Artelia Group, MEP coordination and thermal consultant

Elioth, sustainability consultant

AVLS, acoustic consultant

CSD-FACES, fire security consultant

OLM Paysagistes, landscape architect

Spie Batignolles, general contractor


Honorable Mention, The Architect’s Newspaper Best of Design Awards, Unbuilt – Educational Category, 2021

Finalist, Future Project Category, World Architecture Festival, 2019



Launch of the University of Chicago Center in Paris!

A ceremonial groundbreaking launches the expansion of the new Center, which aims to serve as an important regional hub for ambitious education, research, and collaboration across Europe, the Middle East, and Africa. The expanded facility, designed by Studio Gang in collaboration with ICADE and PARC Architectes, will nearly triple the size of the current center to accommodate increased demand among faculty, students, alumni, and partners to study, conduct research, and convene in Paris.


Journal du Dimanche — "La prestigieuse université de Chicago s'installe à Paris"

Studio Gang selected in international competition to develop new, mixed-use building to house the University of Chicago’s Center in Paris.


University of Chicago Center in Paris Design On View at Pavillon de l'Arsenal

March 11, 2019 – May 9, 2019
Pavillon de l’Arsenal
21, Bld Morland, Paris

More information


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