renzo piano: masterplan for the ex-falck area, milan

From Design Boom

visualization of renzo piano’s masterplan for the ex-falck area in milan rendering by frédéric terreaux © renzo piano building workshop

milan has historically been home to some of the world’s most recognized brands. being the hub of fabrication for many of them,
the city now finds itself with decommissioned factories, closed, abandoned and often times forgotten, leaving a considerable amount of space
unusable and often times unsightly. the falck steel plant of sesto san giovani in northern milan is one such place, leaving behind many
aged social housing units, an industrial skeleton, and a greying landscape. renzo piano has recently been given legal rights to the 1.3 million square-meter site
where he plans to restore it as a vibrant place for the community, complete with a museum, library, research centers, universities, homes, shops,
and a 1 million square-meter park tying it all together – slated for completion by 2018. the master plan follows a bi-axial concept whereby
the north-south axis (dubbed the ‘rambla’) will contain commercial and residential program and will add approximately 1270 new housing units.
the east-west datum will host the public functions mentioned above, merged with a newly green landscape. the rambla will feature a series of towers
ranging between 40 and 90 meters tall, elevated on columns  above the ground with hanging green gardens clad in terracotta-colored tiles.


a project of this size must also take energy use and infrastructure into account if it is to be successful. the entire campus is designed to be autonomously
powered, relieving the grid of more energy loads. connections with various parts of the city will also be improved; a redesigned train station will better link
to existing public transport services and the ‘elf’ – alternative energy vehicles – will be introduced as a new means of low-capacity mobility.




street view visualization of commercial and residential buildings
rendering by frédéric terreaux © renzo piano building workshop



rendering by stefano goldberg © renzo piano building workshop



ground plan
© renzo piano building workshop



site plan
© renzo piano building workshop



site diagram
drawing by stefano goldberg © renzo piano building workshop

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arata isozaki + andrea maffei associati: citylife

More “starchitect” architecture masquerading as “urban design” I can only sympathize with this comment on the post by nicola brambilla as being the voice of the people who live there crying out in disgust at he manipulation of intentions by economic and political interests

i’m from milan, i live very closed to the area where they’re building it, so i think i can spend a minute to say a word.

i just want to say that this project it is really NOT what people from milan NEED.
In the competition there were other projects (like Renzo Piano’s masterplan) really well-designed, BUT (guess what ?!) WAS CHOSEN THE ONE WITH THE BEST BUYING OFFERT (the one is showed here).

i’m very sad about this.

i’d like to think in the future will be the people that LIVE around to CHOOSE what is better for the CITY


‘citylife tower’ by arata isozaki + andrea maffei associati, milan, italy
image courtesy of arata isozaki + andrea maffei associati

designboom recently visited the milanese studio of arata isozaki + andrea maffei associati, where wereceived an exclusive look at ‘citylife’, the new skyscraper currently under construction at the historic fairgrounds in milan. designed in response to the city’s chaotic industrial core, the office tower features a differentiated form which looks to reinterpret and simplify the complex, urban tension of milan. part of a larger master plan, the design reflects the city’s changing aesthetic, its slim, modern facade representing a renewed urban center.

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