Lyon Part-Dieu shopping centre || MVRDV

Dear Diary,

the project I see today is the renovation of the Part-Dieu shopping center in Lyon, France by MVRDV.

The Lyon Part-Dieu shopping centre houses of a mixture of commercial, leisure and newly created public space. The design restructures each side of the mall, opening up the building to the street and adding a vast public roof garden. At the same time, through re-arranging the existing programme and replacing the old car park, MVRDV has vastly increased the usable space of the building; adding an extra 32.000m2 gross lettable area as well as considerable areas of public space. The lower levels of the complex consist of retail spaces, whilst the upper levels host restaurants, parks and a cinema; as well as several half-levels of parking.


As part of a wider urban plan for the area surrounding the Part-Dieu shopping centre, the design by MVRDV focusses on integrating the building become more in its surrounding urban fabric and hopes to allow everyday life to permeate through it. The street is not only extended through the building via an east-west walkway, but also over it by stairways and escalators that take users up and over the complex. MVRDV pushed to reconnect the shopping centre with the facilities in its immediate context. A rearrangement of terraces on the south façade have provided direct connection with the library, and the restructured main east entrance provides access to visitors arriving from the Part-Dieu train station; which is also due to be renovated.

“The terraces turn the vast roofs of the shopping centre into open, green space in which the public can meet and relax; a quality that is currently missing in this area,” said Winy Maas, co-founder of MVRDV, in a statement. “By rearranging the programme, we create an urban platform that is somewhere between tranquil park and vibrant market square, recreating an atmosphere inspired by the Lyon river side.”

“The redevelopment of the Part-Dieu commercial center is an opening act towards the city”continued Maas, “The formerly enclosed and defensive block is peeled open and thus becomes a place for the public to inhabit. It becomes part of the city.”


This evaporation of the façade, coupled with the redefinition of the spaces within and outside the building, looks to reconnect the Part-Dieu centre with not only its immediate surroundings, but also to the wider area of Lyon. Views are created to the Metallic Tower of Fourvière and the city’s Basilica Notre Dame by opening up the façade pattern and rearranging the existing building masses. Following on with the idea of transparency and permeability throughout the scheme, glazed components cover the top level of structure, and glass openings as well as stairwells look down into the heart of the shopping centre.


project development


interaction with urban context


terrace and roof interaction


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