The new Gucci Hub
The“Gucci Hub” is the new Milanese office Building of the famous fashion brand that has chosen to give back life to a building rich of memories for the city: the former Caproni aeronautics factory built in 1915.
In 2013 Gucci has chosen this area to make it its own Milanese offices and gave Piuarch - www.piuarch.it – the task to recover the pre- existing architectonic heritage by defining a volumetric and conceptual system able to house the needs of a modern headquarters.
At the end of a meticulous renovation process of the original structure, the new “Gucci Hub” is now a complex of 35.000 square meters that gathers together for the first time all the Milanese offices of the brand, the showrooms, the space for fashion show, the graphic activities and the photo studio, the dining and a restaurant, inside a location that can house over 250 people.
In 1915 the first buildings of the Caproni Factory rise in the East green area of Milan. Sheds and hangars on one side oversees on the current Via Mecenate, while on the West the Taliedo flight camp opened, from which the airplanes took off for their test flights and trials. Engineer Gianni Caproni was one of the biggest pioneers of worldwide aviation and, under he’s guide, the Caproni grew up fast passing from 120 workers in 1915 to 2.300 in 1918. In the Plant of Via Mecenate biplanes and triplanes were constructed, they were among the most famous planes during that period. By the end of World War II, with the drastic reduction of military commissions, the Caproni entered a time of crisis which culminates, in 1950, in the shut down. The whole area of Taliedo lost its aeronautic vocation transforming in a residential area.
Following the dismissive in the ’50 the buildings were destined to artisan activities, workshops and warehouses that didn’t change the original architectonic character and, apart for a few exceptions, didn’t had any volumetric variations.
Piuarch has thus set an example of industrial archeology intervention in which the ability to retrieve historical architectural landmarks is joined with the desire to establish a high quality environment aesthetic, functional, organizational, representation in which all functions and symbols connect in a line of continuity.
Recovery and enhancement of the characteristic sheds shed of Caproni was the first element of the redevelopment project. Was therefore prepared the demolition of buildings constructed in the 60s and 70s - placed along the axis of Via Maecenate - why not show any architectural coherence with the historical elements of the' 20s. The renovation of the original buildings returns the architectural character of the time, with its regular structural spans, the sheds that bring light inside and brick facades facing bricks. Particular attention was paid to the Hangar recovery - a volume of "exceptional" size, once intended for the final assembly of Caproni aircraft - carefully recovered for a total area of 3,850 square meters, of which 2,000 square meters will be used to house the fashion shows from 2017.
The central street, a driveway before, now becomes the pedestrian axis that links and sews all buildings and functions, up to lead to the covered square: a large open space, recovering the original centrality, distributes and connects all activities of ' company.
Here you can see the restoration of metal roofing structures, characterized by complex geometries and minimum profiles, for example engineering constructive era.
The layout plan of the buildings, mainly on the ground floor, and the articulation of pedestrian paths, generate a continuous relation between internal and external: giving the feeling that there is not a clear division between work spaces, open spaces, public and promenade public areas.
In this continuous relationship between full and empty plays a vital role green landscape. A dense forest, a tree-lined square, common gardens, patios and green walls, all in harmony with the historical language of the buildings, are the components of a sustainable "project" that, together with the certification LEED Gold, brings to the space center the quality work of living.
The wood of linden trees is the real green lung of the complex while the central courtyard surrounded by historical buildings in brick, designed as a large urban plaza with trees arranged in a regular shirt. The void left by demolitions Via Maecenate, are not rebuilt but become gardens that give light to interior spaces and filter the view from the street.
At the center of the complex Piuarch designs a modern building which introduces a new aesthetic language and material: a tower with 6 floors with a glass facade punctuated by a dark metal weave of brisoleil. The dark colour is also used for all of the original metal parts, structural and crowning.
A black parallelepiped that insists on an area of over 3,000 square meters and that is detached and contrasted to the red of face/views bricks. The breaking of symmetry determined by the new volume makes then even more perceptible the historical tissue which characterizes the identity of the complex, while determining a new level of centrality towards which tend all the functions distributed in the plant.
The 30,000 square meter total area is covered by buildings for about 18,000 square meters; the constructed area is 40,000 square meters of which 15,000 in the basement. Here is a garage space that can accommodate up to 300 cars with direct access from the perimeter road.
The new headquarters Gucci in Milan is a project 100% sustainable: once the work is completed, it will, in fact, present a dense forest, a tree-lined square, common gardens, patios and walls and green roofs, all in harmony with the historical language of the buildings, which together with the Leed Gold certification, it puts the center of the workspace the quality of life.
In terms of energy performance, the project has allowed an average of 25% savings on energy costs and a share of the total annual energy cost is offset by renewable energy generated on site through the use of a photovoltaic system and the heating and cooling effectuated by heat pumps using the ground water. A highly advanced water management system allows saving 20% of water for the users management.
The entire area also provides an advanced plant management to measure the power consumption of individual systems (such as lighting, heating, cooling) of individual areas of buildings and individual machines, so as to allow proper application of the most advanced energy management policies and identify in advance any malfunctions that generate energy waste. During the works phase, over 90% of waste products in the construction site were recycled.