We are talking about the Gallic city of Alesia, which in the middle of the 1st century. BC e. took after a difficult siege by Caesar; the combined forces of the Gauls were commanded by the famous Vercingetorig, who was captured, taken to Rome and executed there. Despite the unfortunate outcome of this confrontation for the Gauls, Alesia is considered the most important point in the national history of France. The myth of the special heroism of the Gauls, which developed in the era of romanticism, prompted Napoleon III in the middle of the 19th century. erect a colossal statue of Vercingetorig there.
Now, in the place of Alesia, supposedly located at the top of the hill, and in the fields around where the Roman legions stood,
a museum park was created. Traces of ancient history have been preserved there, areas of fortifications of the opposing sides have been reconstructed, but the main "exhibit" is the landscape that remained generally unchanged, which was a theater of military operations 2,000 years ago. Therefore, the goal of the park management, the architects of the Chumi bureau and the landscape architect Michel Devin is to emphasize the natural environment, to draw the viewer's attention to it, leaving modern buildings “out of brackets”.
The newly opened information center is one of two new buildings in Alesia. It is located in a valley on the site of a Roman camp; the second building will be a museum on the site of a Gallic fortification on a hill; its opening is scheduled for 2015. Both buildings should not disturb the appearance of the landscape and directly resemble the buildings of antiquity: "the necessary degree of abstraction" is expressed through the correct cylindrical shape of the structures.
The dark glass facades of the information center are covered with wooden bars from the outside, reminiscent of Roman fortifications. Inside there is an exposition telling about the siege of Alesia, the defeat of the Gauls and its consequences. It is composed of media installations and is designed for visitors of all ages. On the roof, there is an observation terrace planted with greenery, allowing you to look around the place of historical events.