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A pioneering building

The Maison de l’Île-de-France was inaugurated on the 19th of September 2017 in the presence of Valérie Précresse, President of the Île-de-France region. It was financed by the region, which is also the project owner, and designed by Agence Nicolas Michelin & Associês, in partnership with the DEERNS design office and with the support of the ADEME and it responds to the environmental ZEN goal: Zero Energy. Its 142 rooms welcome students and researchers of all  .


A building for international mobility

The Maison de l’Île-de-France participates in the international attractivity of the territory and the universities of Paris among strong global competition. It offers 142 comfortable and light rooms with a large window opening up to the Cité internationale’s park. Situated between the Maison du Cambodge and the maison du Liban, on a plot of land alongside the ring road, it stands out by its exceptional ecological qualities. On the side of the park, the building has a clever and discrete volumetry, creating a symmetry with the east wing of the Maison du Cambodge. In the South, the building expands to be able to capture as much solar energy as possible and to create an acoustic screen against the ring road. The house is divided into two large functional parts. The ground floor and the first floor have communal areas intended to encourage meetings and exchanges between the residents. The upper floors house the rooms. On each floor in the northern façade there’s a communal kitchen that opens up to the park. The rooms are spacious and equipped with a shower and toilets and are all handicap accessible.

The first energy positive communal living house

The Maison de l’Île-de-France is the first energy positive communal living building using 100% solar and recycling to be built in France with a large thermal storage. It translates the Île-de-France’s and Cité internationale’s strong desire for sustainable development. It also allows the Cité internationale to renew its architectural tradition which has always promoted excellence, boldness, experimentation and innovation.

A pioneering building

An innovative zero energy building, the Maison de l’Île-de-France is the result of a common desire between the Île-de-France region and the Cité internationale to invest in an ecological technological future. It allows the Cité internationale to be at the forefront of communal constructions that are respectful of the environment. In agreement with the regional guidelines and the City of Paris’s climate plan, the building aims to be environmentally exemplary thanks to innovative techniques. The special feature of this project is a storage technique for solar energy in two 110m3 water tanks that are located at the heart of the building, and which were developed by the design office DEERNS. The heat accumulated in the tanks is produced thanks to thermal solar tubes that are installed in on the building’s southern façade. It allows for the production of heating and clean water and to store any excess, which can be used during the winter months.


A revolution for resident comfort

The project strives to be exemplary in terms of conserving energy. For resident comfort, the building responds to two types of needs: heating and electricity. The southern façade is covered in photovoltaic and thermal captors that help store solar energy. Behind the façade is a storage energy. There are two large 6-story-tall vertical tanks with a total capacity of 156,000 litres (156m3 from two 78m3 tanks) which are covered in 40cm of isolation and which are visible from the outside and heat the residence’s water. Heat is produced from the building’s southern façade which is made up of thermal solar tubes covering a surface area of 150 m². It is a real solar power plant that covers 80% of the thermal needs. The development of this technology to such a large scale is a first in France. Even though inter-seasonal storage isn’t a novelty, it has never been used for such long periods of time until now. The Maison de l’Île de France’s stated goal is to produce and accumulate the maximum amount of energy in the summer in order to use it in the winter. The system is completed by 540 m² of monocrystalline photovoltaic collectors on the roof.

Making the residents aware of climate change

The pioneering nature of the Maison de l’Île-de-France in the environmental sphere led the Île-de-France region to call upon the IRCAM, the Ecole Nationale Supérieure de Création Industrielle and the Ecole des Beaux-arts du Mans to think up and design a sound installation that is a part of the house’s ecological identity. The Piézoplex is a honeycomb structure installed on the ceiling of the entrance hall that gives out a multitude of quiet noises that indicate the building’s energy state. The different sounds indicate if the energy is in a deficit, balanced or positive, depending on the season and solar supply.

The Maison de l’Île de France is compact and optimised to respond to the zero net energy goals. It’s a building that saves energy and is particularly optimised for light and comfort: a mosaic, light and quirky building.


Nicolas Michelin urban architect, ANMA Architectes Urbanistes
Storage tanks

The storage tanks can accommodate more than 155,000 litres of water. The objective: to produce as much energy as possible, store it and then to recycle it into the house.

Thermal sensors

The south-east façade is covered in thermal sensors that store solar energy and heat the water tanks. 

Winner of the Green Solutions Awards

The building won the International Prize at the Green Solutions Awards in 2018 in the category of COP 24 in Poland.

The Maison de l’Île-de-France’s accommodation and services in detail

The Maison de l’Île-de-France, which offers 142 places, privileges communal spaces with common areas to promote living together and has a large double-height multipurpose room which opens onto the park.

Visit the Maison de l’Île-de-France

Want to visit the Maison de l’Île-de-France? The guided tours will allow you to discover this exceptional heritage.