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Energy conserving communication is one of the main challenges of wireless sensor networks. A number of studies and research are focused on saving energy and on extending the lifetime of these networks. Architectural approaches, like hierarchical structures, tend to organize network nodes in order to save energy. Most of these protocols need background information on the network in order to be efficient. In this paper, we describe a new approach for organizing large sensor networks into zones, based on the number of hops. This network architecture enables a hierarchical network view, with the purpose of offering efficient routing protocols based on zone partitioning. Simulations undertaken demonstrate that our approach is energy-efficient; this is highlighted by the reduction of traffic overhead.