The new business community in Porta Nuova 21 signed by the Milanese architecture firm Laboratorio Permanente.
The project of Spaces Milano explores innovative ways of using spaces through a precise and sensible analysis of the context. Spaces occupies about 4,000 sqm of a traditional second post war Milanese building. This building faces the Bastioni and turns towards Piazza XXV Aprile, a new city center and one of the most interesting examples of urban renovation.
Spaces creates a community environment that offers multiple spatial solutions to create networks. Designing this ecosystem is like designing a small town or a large collective house. Each space is a useful place for the community that allows multiple exchanges, from formal ones to informal and spontaneous ones. Even a hidden corner, if well designed, can turn into a great place of work and unexpected meeting.
The strength of the project Spaces Milano relies on combining the informal model of this kind of spaces with the sensible aesthetic and rigorousness of the city, of its buildings and its entrances. The project focuses on the potential of a flexible and innovative space and at the same time on the quality of the materials.
The project picks up from a first generation of coworking, emphasizing exclusively the informal and playful image of the spaces, that were built as an only alternative to the excessively corporate dimension characterizing the office projects of the 'international style'. Spaces Milan tries to overcome this dichotomy taking advantage of the potentialities of both scales. The common spaces, even though organized according to principles t hat favor social interactions, have been conceived with an aesthetic rigor and attention to details and materials similar to that of the interior design project instead of a collective environment.
The custom-made American walnut furniture, the great Italian and Nordic design pieces, the soft, yet warm fabrics, perfectly fit an essential and rigorous environment made of concrete and ceppostone surfaces. These materials are strongly linked to the rationalist tradition of Milan. The stone of the Milanese entrances is here reinterpreted and reconsidered to enhance the relationship with other materials and becomes a real architectural furniture.
At the ground floor a great attention was paid to the lighting design. Seen from outside, lights and lamps are perceived as iridescent architectures, flying carpets that light up the Milanese nights.
Colors and materials define in a subtle way the character of each space: from the bright and playful colors of the areas near the entrance to the warm walnut wood of the cafeteria, from the soft palette of the working area and of the booths to the neutral colors of the quiet area.
At the office floors, the abstract materiality of glass walls framed with black steel is opposed to the warm oak of the floorings. Along each corridor the lights, hanged with a 30 degree inclination, replace the false ceiling and emphasize the sense of movement. Thanks to a series of folding walls, the sequence of meeting rooms of the basement easily becomes a unique, continuous event space. The terrace on the rooftop, paved with a wooden deck and shaded by a thin steel structure, is conceived as a domestic living room, open to the skyline of a constantly changing city.