The new Parc des Expositions of Toulouse, known as PEX, sits on a 60-hectare site of agricultural land at the edge of the city, near an international airport and one of the largest and economically important Airbus factories. This area on the outskirts is characterized by sprawling developments and landscape fragmented by highways and train tracks. The project counteracts this reality with a compact and multifunctional building, dense and filled with flexible spaces. As large-scale strategy, a service axis of almost three kilometers joins the Airbus factory with the River Garonne, connecting the space with the surroundings and marking a strip for future developments. The building, 660 meters long and 316 wide, is divided into three parallel bars of program.

The central one is dedicated to communications, with a six-story parking block and paths of access to the exhibition halls to the south and outdoor exhibition and event hall to the north. The structure of the complex is a three-dimensional grid that extends to include the facade and the roof, an unencumbered space that provides a plug-in system for services and for exhibitors in the exhibition hall.


Client

Société Publique Locale d’Améngement (SPLA)

Design Development

Partner-in-charge: Rem Koolhaas. Associate in charge: Clément Blanchet. Competition team: Sara Bilge, Sandra Bsat, Savinien Caracostea-Balan, Marek Chytil, Kaveh Dabiri, Lionel Debs, Daniel Dobson, Marcela Ferreira, Nathan Friedman, Didzis Jaunzems, Anthony Joyeux, Matthew Jull, Filippo Nanni, Elina Spruza, Wes Thomas, Haohao Zhu

Collaborators

Local Architects: Puig Pujol, Sutter Taillandier. Engineering: INGÉROP. Landscape: Batlle i Roig Arquitectes. Scenography: dUCKS scéno. Lighting: 8’18’’. Acoustic: DHV. Ergonomist: ABILIS. Adviser: CVA. Images-movie: Arte Factory. Photos: Franz Parthesius, Hans Werlemann

Program

40,000 m² column-free indoor exhibition space; 41,000 m² outdoor exhibition space; 15,000 m² multifunction event hall; 15,000 m² of logistics and amenities space; 160,000 m² for parking (6,500 places)