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Jussieu Campus

From Academic Kids

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Main entrance
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The Jussieu Campus (Campus Universitaire de Jussieu) is a higher education campus located in the 5th arrondissement of Paris, France. The main entrance is on Place Jussieu, thus the name.

It hosts University of Paris 6, University of Paris 7 and Institut de Physique du Globe de Paris. While independent, the two universities and the institute share facilities, such as libraries, and often have joint research groups. Certain of the research libraries of the campus (in mathematics, for instance) are among the largest and with the widest selection of books in France.

Because of reconstruction programs in progress (see below), various facilities have been moved out of the campus to other parts of Paris.


Contents

Facilities

The campus was opened in 1971. Most of the campus consists in a regular grid of 6-floor wings; at the points of intersection are staircases and elevators. The grid is built on a large elevated slab, and the wings do not reach to the bottom of the slab, making it possible to walk across the campus without crossing the buildings. Underneath the slab are ground-level and underground facilities, including a car park.

Controversies and Asbestos

The campus is generally decried as an architectural failure. The hollow space under the building wings enables wind to build up its force, and thus the environment on the slab is unfriendly. The regular grid plan may be confusing, since it is sometimes difficult to know where one is located, especially since not all corridors allow through crossing nowadays (laboratories etc. have often chosen to lock their corridor for safety reasons). The campus has become increasingly degraded since its erection.

The most worrisome particularity of the Jussieu architecture is its extensive use of asbestos as a fire retardant. Asbestos fibers are dangerous when inhaled, causing lung cancer, and as a consequence the use of asbestos in buildings is prohibited in France, but wasn't at the time when the campus was built. The risks are particularly acute for workers who intervene the building (drilling walls etc...). Also, it seems that the fire retardation is not really sufficient, which, coupled with the use of metal for frames, would result in an early collapse in the case of a large fire. An ambitious clean-up program was begun in 1997 after some high-profile protests. The wings are stripped off all equipment, walls etc... to the naked concrete frame, and are then rebuilt in modern materials.

Because of the extensive work undertaken, some facilities, such as the mathematics institute and computer science laboratories, have been moved away to other parts of Paris. Also, the main part of University Paris 7 should be moved away to another location (http://www.sigu7.jussieu.fr/PRG/index.htm) in the 13th arrondissement on the left bank of the Seine.

Transportation

The campus is served by the Paris Métro station Jussieu, as well as a number of bus lines.

External links

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