The Lu Tower, Nantes, Pays de la Loire, France 

Since January 1st, 2000, the LU, as in ‘Lefeuvre Utile’, has turned into LU, as in ‘Lieu Unique’ (unique spot). On the banks of the Saint-Felix canal, the old factory of the famous manufacturer of Petit Beurre biscuits was transformed into a place that plays an essential role in the cultural life of Nantes. A space for artistic exploration, it is the site of the National Centre for Contemporary Arts and holds an auditorium where shows, exhibits and performances are held. However, for locals and visitors alike, the LU has become much more than this. Entirely post-modern, with its architecture of an abandoned factory, people of all ages cross paths at its bar and famous terrace of loungers, its restaurant, its Turkish bath, its nursery, its bookshop, etc. The Lieu Unique is a ‘Lieu de Vie’ (Place of Life).

Inaugurated at the end of 1885, the factory was in operation for a century before definitively closing its doors in 1989. In 1998, one of the two 38m towers which marked the entrance to the LU factory (the other was destroyed during the bombings) was entirely renovated and boasts its original shapes and bright colours.

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