Pre-fab drug store
New village chemist, Boves, Amiens, France
Pharmacy and clinic in Boves, near Amiens in western France by Ian Ritchie Architects is set on a typical French countryside-meets-village-edge strip development. The site drops sharply away from then road and is its own flood plain allowing locally built stiletto heal footings to rise to street level.
The building itself, with steel frame, corrugated aluminium roof, plywood walls, glass frontage and tubular staircase was pre-fabricated in Epinal in eastern France by a company that specialised in two distinct areas of construction, agricultural building machinery such as grain silos and the glamourous structural steelwork for French-president-led Grand Projects in Paris, such as the Cite des Sciences et de L’Industrie at La Villette.
A limited number of pre-made parts were delivered on low-loaders, Convois Exceptionelles and the pharmacy was erected on site over just a few summer days to be completed and open inside a month.
Compared in the journal Progressive Architecture, by Archigram’s Ron Herron to Moholy Nagy’s “painting” EM1 Telephonbild, that he claimed to have “ordered by telephone”, all communication between architects and fabricators of the Pharmacie, including all the A4 drawings was exchanged only by Fax machine, making this the first and possibly last building to be designed and built in this way.
Service: Ian Ritchie Architects
Location: Boves, Amiens, France
Client: Emmanuel Gentit
Areas: XX m2Dates: 1990