The Interwar Years
The building at Rue Etraz 2
The building at number 2 Rue Etraz is striking by the care taken over the aesthetics of its façade. It was built in 1937 by the architect Jacques Favarger, one of the most important local architects of the time. He designed three other similar buildings and created almost an entire city block.
Renovation had been planned for the Etraz neighbourhood since the 1920s. Jacques Favarger worked nearby and provided several projects, treating the area like a modern gateway to the city, designing dynamic and monumental blocks. In the end he only completed Rue Etraz 2.
The north side combines clean modern lines with careful decoration using a rich array of materials to differentiate between the two parts. The first three levels, housing stores and offices, present concrete columns and large bay windows.
The next five levels, dedicated to residential properties, are dressed in travertine marble with terracotta brick siding. The whole is brought to life with a mixture of overhangs and concavities that enhance the impression of height. To the south, at Rue de l’Ecole-Supérieure 3, a second, lower part of the building offsets the sloping terrain.