Le Corbusier, Le Quartier de Frugés, Pessac, France, 1925

Le Corbusier, Le Quartier de Frugés, Pessac, France, 1925

Le Corbusier, Le Quartier de Frugés, Pessac, France, 1925

The project was commissioned to Le Corbusier by Mr. Frugés the owner of a big factory around Bordeaux. The main idea was to create a standardized set of houses that would be easy to build and not expensive as they were destined to be inhabited by the factory workers. Le Corbusier created a set of three different types of houses based on the idea of standardization and designed the ensemble of the houses. Today, most of the houses have been already changed and/or destroyed. Although people are starting to make efforts to restore and save this patrimony.

An amazing site that bears witness of the modern architectural heritage of France. The building of this town between 1924 and 1926, by architects Le Corbusier and Pierre Jeanneret, was a real revolution in these days, concerning social housing as well as architecture itself.

All this is due to the meeting of two personalities.

A sugar industrialist, Henry Frugès, interested in all the trendy artistic and architectral innovations of that time, wanted his workers to live in «a wide meadow surrounded by pine trees, to create a garden town».
A daring and avant-gardist architect and town planner, Charles-Edouard Jeanneret, known as Le Corbusier, had already exposed his opinion about the problems in town – planning, collective housing and standard houses.

Their debates and Le Corbusier’s ideas, using highly functional principles and simple, bare, geometrical shapes, led to the Cité Frugès – Le Corbusier vast project, of which only 50 houses were built in 1926. The Frugès modern quarters are a major project in a historical point of view, since they are the first social buildings created by Le Corbusier as well as his first large – scale plan.

The comfort and esthetism privileged in these modest buildings at that time had imposed the architect as a precursor.
Walking in the streets of this town, one can discover 50 dwellings divided into 6 different shapes : «zigzag», «in staggered rows», «twin», «skyscraper», «arcade» and «freestanding».

The house located on 3, rue des Arcades has been listed as a historical building.

The City Council of Pessac has bought a «skyscraper» house, converted into a Maison Frugès – Le Corbusier, open for visits and exhibition all year.






Bibliographical References:

Ferrand, Marylene, ed. 1998. Le Corbusier : Les Quartiers Modernes Fruges. Paris : Fondation Le Corbusier.

Reviewed by Pengcheng, 15,03,2017