Piuarch Wins Human Technopole Competition

John Hill
7. April 2020
Visualization: Piuarch

Milan's Piuarch has been selected to design the Human Technopole Foundation's new building and campus for scientific research, part of the MIND Milano Innovation District located in the former Expo Area.

Human Technopole Foundation (the client) and Arexpo (the contracting agency) made the announcement on Friday, April 3, during a digital press conference that was necessary given the coronavirus pandemic. The 10-story, 35,000-square-meter building will be devoted to research laboratories for life sciences, specifically biochemistry and molecular biology. It will be at the center of Human Technopole Campus, which already consists of three existing buildings, including the Italy Pavilion from the 2015 Milan Expo. Piuarch's design features 3,000 square meters of green areas: a parterre, a covered plaza and a roof garden.

"This open space [the parterre], which in part also continues under the building, provides access directly to the fully glazed atrium, and from there to the covered plaza." (Visualization: Piuarch)
Piuarch — the firm of Francesco Fresa, Germán Fuenmayor, Gino Garbellini and Monica Tricario — said in a statement:

"At a time like this, we are proud to contribute to the creation of a new building for scientific research and human well-being. Today these topics require our highest level of attention and commitment. People are at the heart of our project, recipients and protagonists of a place aimed at facilitating dialogue and the sharing of knowledge, a space which we consider fundamental for the rebirth of Milan. The new Human Technopole building was designed primarily as a meeting place, thanks to an architecture capable of interconnecting public and research functions. From this continuous spatial sequence, a fluid and highly iconic, functional and adaptable, sustainable and avant-garde landscape arises."

"[This] interconnected, panoptic space is the architectural transcription of the values of an institution such as Human Technopole, which promotes scientific research as a highly ethical and 'transparent' activity." (Image: Visualization)

The international competition was carried out in two phases, both anonymous, with Piuarch besting six other finalists.

The new building is planned to be built in "1,100 consecutive days," just over three years. Naturally, given the circumstances around the coronavirus, a start date for construction of the nearly 100 million Euro building was not announced.

"The roof garden is the natural complement to the covered plaza: here, the introverted 'vertical campus' opens onto its surroundings and the city." (Visualization: Piuarch)

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