The Valenciennes UFO

Architecture Valenciennes

Place de la République in Valenciennes stands this building which does not go unnoticed. Designed by the architect Léon Forgia in the 1970s to house the CAF and the URSSAF (some French administrations), the work was completed in 1980 after certain hazards due in particular to a water table in the basement and administrative hassles.

The building, all in repetitive geometric shapes, built with bricks and concrete, is classified in the architectural style of the modern movement. It could be compared to brutalism, itself from the modern movement, with its massive appearance, its clean lines, its facade without ornament and its many windows. Another example of architecture representative of the modern movement in the region: the impressive Villa Cavrois in Croix (which will also be discussed here in a future note).

For the record: from the Middle Ages until the end of the 19th century Valenciennes was surrounded by ramparts. At the location of the Place de la République was the Porte de Tournai, which was destroyed in 1886.


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