China, Italy ...
A history of continuous connections between the two nations that started in the XIII century from the voyage of Marco Polo with his masterpiece: "il Milione". A narration of the encounter of two millenary cultures.
The project for the Italian Trade Center “I Principi d'Italia” looks for the architectural expression of this historical encounter. From a conceptual point of view the project is a narration, the narration of a voyage between China and Italy and so, of the encounter of the eastern and the western culture. The project starts from the city that embodies the historical and cultural connections between China and Italy: Venice, the city of Marco Polo.
The Italian Trade Center “I Principi d'Italia” is conceived as a real city, with the complexity and relations of the urban center of Venice, with its public places - large squares, small "campielli", narrow streets - and the constant presence of water: Venice and its relation between city and water is the starting point for a meditation that immediately evokes the water-towns of the Jiangnan Region and so, again, the connection of China and Italy.
The Italian Trade Center “I Principi d'Italia” is organized around a grand public square-park delimited by a transparent screen mediated by the venetian medieval frames and the traditional chinese cerved lattice panels.
The show rooms generate a urban structure with streets, public squares and lateral water canals: the idea is that cinese visitors will experience the same feelings as being in an historical italian city center but with a contemporary architectural expression mediated by the world of italian fashion and products. People walk in the streets, rest a bit under the shadow of the trees in the squares, reflect themselves in the surface of the water canals and enter in the show rooms lighted by large windows, that open the internal space towards the public streets, and by small courtyards mediated by the traditional chinese tianjing.
trade center, office tower, residential tower
gross area: 47.000 sqm
volume: 345.000 cubic metres
bronze glass facade, steel frame
design: 2008 – 2009
ground breaking: 2010
completion: in progress