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CITROËN ON THE CHAMPS ELYSÉES:

BACK TO THE FUTURE

Citroën has chosen architect Manuelle Gautrand to renovate its premises at 42, Avenue des Champs-Elysées in Paris.

In 2004, the premises located at 42, Avenue des Champs-Elysées and currently occupied primarily by a restaurant chain, will be restored to the owner, Citroën.

To mark the event, Citroën has initiated an architectural project to renovate the premises and thus to showcase its prestigious history, as witnessed by the Champs Elysées.

Citroën has made this decision as a carmaker with pride in its history and confidence in its future. The brand's dynamic vitality is illustrated by a rich product offering.

Citroën wanted a powerful and original architectural plan for this historic, prestigious building.

Following a call for tender sent out to six architects last June for this major renovation project, Citroën has chosen the project submitted by Manuelle Gautrand.

One of France's leading architects, Manuelle Gautrand already has a significant track record, including cultural buildings such as a theatre at Béthune, a cultural centre with an auditorium and cinemas at Saint Louis, university buildings and industrial premises, including two airport buildings in Nantes.

A widely published architect who has held many exhibitions in France and Europe, Manuelle Gautrand has already won several prizes, including a Young Architecture award in 1992, the Benedictus Awards in 1999, the Architecture et Maître d'Ouvrage (AMO) prize in 2000 and a prize from France's Academy of Architecture in 2002.

At the same time, Manuelle Gautrand is a consultant (consultant architect to the education officer and universities of Grenoble, consultant architect to France's interministerial mission on the quality of public buildings) and lecturer (Paris Val-de-Seine school of architecture).

The project adopted makes full use of the building's verticality and 25-metre high facade to present the cars. The public will see a spiral in movement, an automotive sculpture made up of seven superimposed rotating platforms. The horizontal perspective provides continuity, so that visitors see the area as a whole. The scenography put in place perfectly reflects the requirements set out in the specifications in terms of modularity and flexibility.

This forum of advanced techniques and technologies will meet a full range of visitor requirements, with current models and sales media as well as information on Citroën culture, with vintage models, audiovisual media and books on the history of the company.

This major architectural project, which turns the spotlight on both Citroën and the Champs-Elysées, is now being presented to the authorities and municipal bodies concerned. For Citroën, this period of discussion is an opportunity to engage in an open dialogue with a view to creating a dynamic consensus between all those involved in the project and - first and foremost - Paris City Hall.

Citroën plans to open these prestigious and historical premises to the public at the end of 2004.

André Citroën displayed his first car, the Type A at the prestigious Champs-Elysées premises in Paris in 1919.

Manuelle Gautrand

© 2002 Julian Marsh/Citroënët/Citroën Direction de la Communication/Manuelle Gautrand