Pavillon Suisse (Swiss Pavilion)
7 boulevard Jourdan
75014 Paris

Le Corbusier and Pierre Jeanneret 1932

Cité universitaire was founded in 1921 to provide accommodation and support for foreign students in Paris, with a number of residential pavilions endowed by different national communities. Le Corbusier was commissioned by the Swiss community in the late 1920s.

The pavilion adheres to Le Corbusier's 'five points of architecture', but with a number of developments since the Villa Savoye. The free facade and horizontal window have become a continuous glazed curtain wall, on the south side of the building (above). The pilotis have developed from thin columns to six massive reinforced concrete 'dog-bones' or 'thighs' with their characteristic figure-of-eight cross section to withstand winds.

While the client accepted the student rooms being raised in mid air, the public spaces were required to be on the ground. The plan accommodates them in a separate block sitting on the earth, its curvaceous form contrasting with the simple slab of the student accommodation.



Simon Glynn 2001

How to visit

After a period of renovation, the building is now open to the public again. Opening hours are weekdays 10am-12pm and 2-5pm.

Take the RER to Cité universitaire. Cross the road into the university campus. Go down the steps to your left, and follow the road to the end, where the Pavilion is on your right. (There is a plan of the campus inside the RER station.)

Books and other web sites

Click the book title to view and to order direct from


0486250237_m.gif (4648 bytes) Towards a new architecture
Le Corbusier

Le Corbusier's original architectural 'manifesto', describing what he sought to achieve, as it first appeared in English in 1931. Accessible (if an unconventional style for today) and stimulating.

Le Corbusier: Ideas and forms
William J.R. Curtis

Readable (quite detailed) account of Le Corbusier's work, well illustrated and well structured.

Le Corbusier and the continuing revolution in architecture
Charles Jencks

A hefty but accessible analysis of Le Corbusier's life and work, drawing on his writing and painting as well as building design.


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