As part of an international competition JS+P were proudly selected to represent the UK amongst three other countries; Canada, Spain and Italy, by market leading real estate giant Gecina. We were challenged to reinvent the building inside and out, implementing a robust design strategy and concept scheme for an existing student campus in the 13th arrondissement, of which we were invited to present our scheme at Gecina’s headquarters in Paris. Our vast knowledge and expertise in the student living sector allowed the studio to create an exciting response for Gecina’s student living arm; Gecina – You First, consisting of a scheme which boasted a wide range of settings for work, rest and play and followed the notion of creating empowering human experiences at the heart of sustainable spaces.

This is all about creating places for academic success; a You First campus. Our objective was to help make the experience so enriched and the students so happy, that they would naturally excel in their studies.

Sector | Student Living

Completion | R&D

Client | Gecina

Our approach to master planning the building was to zone the ground floor with extroverted activities such as coffee, retail and You First lounge; with the basement consisting of what we perceived as more introverted activities such as launderette, fitness suite and quiet study. We subsequently relocated the You First Lounge to create a coherent destination of activity, with a connection to a proposed ‘street’, emphasising a stronger sense of community. Our objective was to help make the experience so enriched and the students so happy, that they would naturally excel in their studies. The You First brand is all about making the world a better place, therefore we proposed a wildlife garden within the vast courtyard to assist with biodiversity and tree planting to support local species.

For the student bedrooms, we designed an innovative modular furniture system unique to You First. The collection consists of a family of elements that can be positioned in multiple configurations to increase storage, functionality and optimize each existing room type. As a series of modular components each delivering purposeful function and utility that can be retrofitted to almost any room type, shape or building layout across each of Gecina’s You First campuses. Each item can be added to a room to increase rental, thus being flexible enough to maximise the potential yield from development opportunities. Each piece was designed to be high-quality with longevity in mind, removal of drawers and doors ensured there was nothing to break or come loose over time. A modular system enabled customers to customize and personalise their rooms with a range of items available from the You First retail, situated on the ground floor amenity.

Behind the Scenes