Designed by Segond-Guyon Architectes, French Embassy is established in Jakarta since 1975, along the prestigious avenue of Jalan Thamrin. Project of the new diplomatic campus comes from the will to bring together all diplomatic and cultural French services in Jakarta, at a single location.
The campus is located between many skyscrapers and a major Highway. Despite its small scale as a five-storey building, the campus is affirming itself as a signal with two recognizable volumes. In this messy urban context, the building is setting apart thanks to its singular and homogeneous materiality. The project aims to provide a simple, clear readable architecture.
Programmatic entities are: Chancellery; economic, military and cultural missions; French Institute. This gathering improves cohesion between all the services. Even if each entity operates independently, they are all arranged around patios, circulation space, voids, and other common spaces, that bringing entities together.
By solving urban, functional and safety issues, the project was designed as a clear expression of organization principles.
A two level pedestal fills all the buildable area. It includes spaces often open to the public, as the Embassy controlled zone, and French Institute main facilities (Auditorium, library and café). The pedestal is covered with volcanic stones, and two large indentations point out the both separate entrances, one to Embassy and another to Institute. These particular emphasize the sense of mass.
Placed on the pedestal, two volumes are rising: one of Chancellery and another of Institute offices. About materiality, there is an important contrast between darkness of pedestal volcanic stones, and clearness of the two volumes on top. To be appropriate from the safety and accessibility point of view, the Chancellery volume is protected with a lacquered and perforated aluminum sheet, which provides shadows, confidentiality and security.