In bringing our research and teaching activities together, the 1, Saint-Thomas site will foster a collaborative environment and promote interdisciplinarity. All members of the Sciences Po community—students, alumni, staff, faculty, public authorities and private partners—will be able to live the Sciences Po experience. This shared home base will highlight both the diversity of their activities and their complementary nature.
An exceptional heritage to develop and promote
The estate has seen four centuries of history since the Dominicans were established here in 1632. The coming renovations will seek to reveal the original structure and put all the past “lives” of the building on display by showcasing elements of great historical and heritage value. The authenticity of the facades will be preserved, the decor and gallery of the cloister restored, the landscaped areas corresponding to the kitchen garden and the cloister garth recreated, and the canons conserved to recall two centuries of military use.
Sciences Po, with project management assistance from JLL, selected the design project proposed by a team which combines architectural creativity and university design engineering :
- Sogelym Dixence (developer – builder)
- Agence Wilmotte & Associates (architects)
- Agence Moreau Kusunoki (architects)
- Cabinet Sasaki (architects)
- Pierre Bortolussi (chief architect at Monuments Historiques)
- Franck Boutté (sustainable development)
- MUGO (landscape architects)
- TO DO TODAY (digital)
A sustainable campus
Because Sciences Po is redeveloping its campus for the next 5, 30 or 150 years, the renovation of the 1, Saint-Thomas site is focused on creating a flexible environment that can adapt to educational innovations, while making the most of an exceptional heritage. It shows an architectural and environmental temperance that respects the past and looks forward to the future.
A responsible campus
With 5,500 m² of green spaces, the new complex formed by 1, Saint-Thomas and 13 rue de l’Université aims for the lightest possible environmental footprint, with the renovation of door and window frames and insulation, and the use of energy efficient equipment throughout. Priority is also given to the accessibility of spaces and facilities for all users.
A place for knowledge to flourish
The library, digital experimentation centre, incubator and cafeteria interact harmoniously with the old buildings, cloister and historic courtyards. Time for action and student initiatives intersects with long periods of thinking and research. This campus-agora will play host to debates, meetings, creative productions, stakeholders and decision-makers, engaging with the city and the world. It embodies the commitment of a university that prioritises its public interest mission.
A wellspring of innovation
By encouraging interaction between disciplines, viewpoints, and the diverse communities we have here at Sciences Po, we intend the future site to be a hub for experimentation and innovation. The Innovation Pavilion—the campus’s only new build—will showcase this ambition. Home to the Centre for Entrepreneurship and the Incubator, it will catalyse a unique ecosystem around digital technology, whether as a research subject (Medialab), a lever for educational innovation (Centre for Digital Education), or a vector for societal innovation (Public Policy Incubator).
New spaces to be created
The development of 1, Saint-Thomas also means the creation of entirely new spaces to meet the needs of the twenty-first century educational community: high-tech equipment and services, flexible spaces to encourage innovative teaching and group work, etc. The introduction of research centres and classrooms to the premises will create a dialogue between the estate’s past and future.
- The Cour Sébastopol: history and serenity
This is the old cloister of the Dominican monks, adjoined to the Saint Thomas Aquinas Church. The Cour Sébastopol is revealed in all its majesty. The cloister, which remains uncovered, plays a major role. Its buildings are home to the research spaces, offering our scholars the quiet and light they need. This emblematic part of the campus highlights the estate’s exceptional heritage and grounds the institution in History. The proposed redevelopment is timeless and the landscaping understated, accentuating its abiding character. The cloister is conducive to strolling and discussion. Its walls will be used to display exhibitions, research output, student clubs’ creations and posters, artworks, etc.
- The Cour Treuille de Beaulieu : shared garden
The Cour Treuille de Beaulieu becomes a large garden adjoining the School of Journalism, based on the theme of innovation. Set slightly apart from the main thoroughfares, it’s a place to relax or perhaps even exercise your green fingers. Here, the growing vegetables and the colours of blossom and foliage help reconnect with the rhythms of nature. An open-air walkway connects the courtyard to the rest of the campus.
- The great Cour Gribeauval : beating heart of the new university
The Cour Gribeauval is the centre of the new campus and connects the communal spaces: the library, incubator and cafeteria. It’s a dynamic space that people cross a thousand times a day. It’s a meeting place and, with the Pavilion, it’s an exceptional setting for holding events. The Pavilion’s sobriety of form, purity of lines, high floors and transparency give it an innovative feel. Home to the cafeteria and the Maison de Sciences Po, it offers multiple possibilities for discussion, eating or work.
- A “Learning Garden” at the heart of the campus
The “Learning Garden” at the foot of the Pavilion in the Cour Gribeauval features an interesting interplay of light and shadow. It’s a place to meet, debate and pass through; a coherent whole in which the boundaries between inside and outside are voluntarily blurred. Combining vegetation, outdoor furniture and gravel paths, the garden offers a multitude of routes across the open-air amphitheatre and to the library and cafeteria via two main stairways.
The acquisition and renovation of 1, Saint-Thomas will cost nearly €200 million :
- €100 million for the purchase of the site
- €90 million for its rehabilitation, of which €20 million will come from fundraising.
€12 million have already been raised thanks to the support of some twenty corporate and individual donors.
The loan Sciences Po has taken out for the purchase will be covered in full by savings in rent, as the university will be able to vacate 17 properties it currently leases in the 6th and 7th arrondissements.