OBR | Milanofiori Residential Complex
The Masterplan of Milanofiori is a cluster characterized by a series of functions (offices, hotels, restaurants, cinemas, leisure, residences) unified by the design of the public park as an extension of the surrounding existing landscape. The design of the Residential Complex seeks a symbiosis between architecture and landscape, so that the synthesis of artificial and natural elements could define the quality of living and the sense of belonging by the inhabitants. The interface between the building and the garden becomes the field where interaction between man and environment takes place. This interface is defined by the “C” form of the complex which encompasses the public park, and by the porosity from interior to exterior that characterizes all 107 apartments.
The two facades are designed differently: the one facing the street outside is more urban, and the one towards the inner park is more organic. The design of the urban facade features a varied composition of white frames, separately identifying the units to stimulate a sense of belonging. These frames include vertical wooden panels of different widths which can slide across the frames and control the light entering as necessary. The organic facade overlooking the garden features double glazed bioclimatic greenhouses. The co-planarity between the glass of the greenhouse and the glass guardrail covering the string-course creates an effect of the construction and the background merging and reversing their roles constantly. This produces a kaleidoscopic overlapping of the reflection of the public garden outside and the transparency of the private garden inside.
The geometry of the building is shaped by terracing of the upper levels for optimum solar exposure and by tapering of the external balconies in order to increase privacy for residents. The winter garden has a double value: an environmental one in providing a buffer zone, which allows thermal regulation, and an architectural one in allowing extension of the interior living space towards the exterior landscape (and vice versa) permitting different uses as seasons change. The overlap of different garden layers creates a holistically natural landscape that is directly and personally customised by each resident in the acts of design and cultivation.
In line with ever changing developments in contemporary living, the porosity of the architecture makes Milanofiori residential complex an evolving organism, in perpetual change, preferring the dynamic exchange between architecture and nature and stimulating the interaction between man and environment. The Milanofiori project interrogates three themes.
Nomadism and sedentarism.
In Contemporary life the house has becomes a place we leave and return to, spending much of our time elsewhere. This means that sedentary and nomadic attitudes coexist in our everyday experience. To express this duality it is not enough to think only in terms of housing types that meet the most varied requirements of all possible users. Instead a paradigm is needed, reversing the direction of the discussion: from the house as an object to the inhabitant as the subject.
Living in the garden. Breaking free from the presence of the hypertrophic “house”, the design of the dwelling is the expression of the site as a whole, rather than a physical place. This is not simply blurring the distinction between inside / outside, but finding the continuum in which space and time are unified in one entity that cannot be separated. To do this we need to think of an opportunity: the garden. In the garden space and time are unified, they become continuous, recovering – evoking – the essential meaning of living in the sense of “taking care”.
From collective complex to “polyvalent-interconnected system”. The project involves a series of open spaces for social interaction in synergy with other parts of the cluster. In this sense, the typical user lives an “interconnected life”, with multiple possibilities of movement even within the same cluster. We try to superceed the concept of “Unity” (d’Habitation) in favour of a polyvalent system that overcomes the typical nuclear family separation between housing and workplace imposed by the industrial civilization, towards new models of mutual relations and transversality.Location: Assago, Milano, Italy Architect: OBR OBR design team: Paolo Brescia and Tommaso Principi, Chiara Pongiglione, Francois Doria, Laura Anichini, Silavia Becchi, Antonio Bergamasco, Paolo Caratozzolo Nota, Giulia D’Ettorre, Julissa Gutarra, Leonardo Mader, Elena Mazzocco, Margherita Menardo, Paolo Salami, Izabela Sobieraj, Paula Vier, Francesco Vinci, Fabio Valido, Barbara Zuccarello Project team: OBR S.r.l., Favero & Milan Ingegneria S.p.A., Studio Ti S.r.l., Buro Happold Ltd Site surveyor: Favero & Milan Ingegneria S.p.A. , Alessandro Bonaventura Project management: P&P S.r.l., Luigi Pezzoli Client: Milanofiori 2000 S.r.l., Gruppo Cabassi Dimensions: slp 15.080 sqm Contractor: Marcora S.p.A. – Cile S.p.A. Chronology:
2007 Construction documents
2006 Definitive project
2005 Preliminary design
2005 Design competition (1st prize)