Case Study 124 Le Grand Louvre Paris 1989

Architects: Pei, Cobb, Freed and Partners

The Grand Projects in Paris have led to a number of outstanding designs: none more controversial or spectacular than the glazed pyramid that forms the portal to the new sunken entrance of the Louvre Museum. Set in the centre of this historic palace which houses one of the world's greatest art galleries, this modern edifice connects the three pavilions in an elegant foyer. The popularity, as with Centre Pompidou, has produced the long queues of crowd control in the old courtyard. However, once the security check is passed, the public freely descend into the new vestibule. The descent can be made by hydraulic platform or else by a gracious concrete spiral which curls around the lift drum. The mechanics of the design are sublime, with the open platform elevated on a stainless cylinder which descends into the ground.

Figure 12.4a Layout plan at lower vestibule level
Figure 12.4b General view of stair and platform of hydraulic lift

Figure 12.4c Stair with lift lowered

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