The building known as “Palazzo Campari” was designed in the 1960s by Ermenegildo and Eugenio Soncini in the heart of Milan and was one of a series of buildings that emerged during the economic boom years, representing a new aspect of corporate identity for Italian industry. It was originally characterised by the burnished colour of the metal structure of the facade, tinted glass of the curtain walling and the brown metallic paint used for the smaller block in via Cavalieri given over to residential use. When it was built, it was considered to be modern and technologically advanced, even experimental. Today however, many of its undeniably attractive aspects have become outdated with regards to current standards of building construction. For this reason the new owner, aware of its quality and evocative presence, decided to bring in architects to redesign the complex.
With respect to the original layout, the aim of the new scheme was to provide a maximum level of flexibility in terms of the division of the internal spaces with sense of uniformity also given by the system of the internal lighting and improved access and circulation.
Other elements central to the design were the use of additional space at ground floor level as well as an overall reworking of the structure of the elevations, made much more open and vibrant especially on via Turati and part of via Cavalieri. With the elevations pulled back with respect to the original boundary it has been possible to eliminate cold bridging – at the time not considered – the useful floor area has been shifted allowing new spaces to be built at ground level, now given over to tertiary use. The landscaped courtyard meanwhile, the heart of the original scheme, has been retained and reworked into a bright new design.
The primary aim and goal of PARK ASSOCIATI, the architecture firm set up by Filippo Pagliani and Michele Rossi in 2000, is to constantly move beyond the compositional and typological bounds of architecture; its projects draw on the kind of free and open exchange of ideas characterising the work carried out by its partners and collaborators; they are based on stylistic-compositional input coming from context, technological research and a combination of materials and methods; they are structured around the handling of design complexity and always focus special attention on the issues of sustainability and energy saving. Featuring a constantly changing yet highly distinctive stylistic approach, PARK’s works are aimed at constantly moving beyond the compositional and typological bounds of architecture: by experimenting with different building scales and different realms of design, they challenge building conventions and stand out on the Italian and international cultural scene for their formal, technological and functional innovation.
Examples of these projects are the Nestlé Headquarters in Assago, the restructuring of the “Serenissima” or “Gioiaotto”, “The Cube by Electrolux” travelling restaurant, Salewa Headquarters in Bolzano and the latest international stores for Brioni fashion company, all projects that have helped build the firm’s reputation and are frequently published in specialist magazines and invited to take part in leading national-international architecture exhibitions.