Citadel of Construction

June 27, 2014

The headquarters of the unified building institutions of the province of Perugia acts as a connecting element, both typoligacally and figuratively, within a very heterogeneous semi-peripheral urban context characterized by a combination of the macroscopic scale, represented by warehouses and shopping structures, and the microscopic one, represented by detached dwellings.The project aims to make a good example, basing its identity on motives of environmental sustainability. All the principles inspiring it, different from one another but all aimed at the same objective, centre on this concept. The primary principle aims to recover “green” by recreating a natural micro-habitat within a highly artificial area.The second principle aims to gain land with a building raised from the ground allowing room for a green slope. The third principle aims to guarantee a comfortable and healthy indoor climate by featuring a system of courtyards which, vaunting an optimal exposure and a varied outlook, assures a high environmental quality.The fourth principle aims to save energy by promoting a conscientious use of resources which is principally dealt with through the typological characters and the spatial conformation, and secondarily through the technical components: the metal sunscreen, the small scale wind turbines, the solar thermal and photo-voltaic systems. All act in different but complementary ways, allowing a rational consumption of energy.The purposes and goals inspiring the project express a desire to overcome rampant urbanization in its own right; together with the high bioclimatic performance of the building, they advocate an auspicious reconciliation between architecture and environment.In terms of distribution the building, which is compact when seen from the outside and complex within, is organized in six floors, connected by two blocks of vertical communication. The basement, houses parking lots and technical areas, the semi-basement is reserved for training activities, while the ground floor, covered by a sloping lawn, is left free with the exception of the vertical connection units, which also contain the main entrance. The first floor houses spaces dedicated to educational activities, the reading room and the conference hall, a café, archives and storage, the second floor offices and meeting rooms. The roof vaunts a didactic technological park.The intentionally exemplary character of the building is confirmed by a system of literary quotations from literature on the art of building, taken from the repertoire of best Italian treatises (Marco Vitruvio Pollione, Leon Battista Alberti, Andrea Palladio, Francesco Milizia etc.), which appear here and there in the interior, in the form of graphic wall decorations.

Design: HOFLAB (Paolo Belardi, Carl Volckerts), HOFPRO (Alessio Burini), Valeria Menchetelli
Photography: Dario Diarena

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