The Humanitas University Campus is designed to accommodate 1.200 international students, teachers, researchers, a 2.000 sqm Simulation Lab, one of the most technological and largest in Europe, high-tech classrooms, a digital library and student residence.
The Campus site occupies the central part of a large construction area tangent to Milan’s Southern Agricultural Park. Its position is at the focal point of the general masterplan to allow for best flexibility in future expansions and to ensure immediate physical and visual connection with the existing hospital.
Focus of this first phase are the three buildings defining the large central courtyard on which they open their glazed entries symbolizing the philosophy behind the Humanitas Group: the close integration of health care, research and education.
The formal composition
The formal reference to the cascina (farm), typical of the location, was chosen for its volumetric composition and the introverted character of its volumes, harmoniously collected around an open space.
This principle has been overstated in an overlapping of degrading volumes that accentuates, from a distance, the compactness of the university campus in its overall vision and reduces the visual impact of the buildings seen by the court; it results in a dynamic and proportionate composition of volumes alternating with suggestive views of the surrounding countryside.
The green campus
The project envisages extending the park's greenery around the buildings through several systems of autochthonous vegetation, with perimetral poplars rows to mitigate the view of the industrial area, plowed fields and spontaneous vegetation as a connective tissue capable of connecting visually the new buildings to rest of the hospital.
The green campus is surely not confined to landscaping but it is also the expression of a special attention to environmental issues that has permitted a significant reduction in energy consumption. The careful implementation of climatic strategies supported by active systems such as groundwater heat pumps, low temperature radiant heating panels and installation of photovoltaic roofing panels has allowed to reach the maximum energy efficiency, certified by the achievement of the CENED A3 class.
The buildings orientation and their shape with degrading volumes to the South decisively help to increase the sunlight ingoing in summer and to reduce heat dispersion in winter.
The three buildings around the square have the same façade treatment, with slight chromatic and geometric variations underlining their different functions.
The multifunctional HUB is a building consisting of a basement, two floors, plus a large technical room at the top. The basement houses a 400-seats canteen and its kitchen. On the ground floor are located the library, including study areas, and the bar. The first floor, currently unfinished, will later welcome recreation areas, a gym and meeting rooms. The building is characterized by a large central outdoor patio, which allows all the surrounding spaces, even the ones underground, to receive natural light and air.
The glazed façade of the court amplifies as a kaleidoscope the dynamism of the activities that take place around it and visually connects them to each other and to the surrounding park.
The DIDACTICS emerges as the most introverted welcoming classrooms, administrative offices, the Rector’s office and the Simulation Center. Two large light wells locate the main stairs, expanding like a ribbon in the vacuum of the triple height; these large skylights allow to transform the inner areas of the building into bright focuses around which the entire interior distribution rotates.
The large window of the main hall highlights the main visual axis that connects without interruption the hospital with the Parco Agricolo Sud through the most representative building of the campus.
The building consists of a basement and two floors. On the ground floor are located classrooms of various sizes and typologies fo teaching; on the first floor are located teachers’ offices, administrative offices organized both in open spaces and enclosed rooms and the Rector’s office; the basement houses a Simulation Lab allowing to develop educational paths at all levels through taught-classes, simulations and anatomical exercise.
The RESEARCH building consists of three floors with the same internal distribution showing the division along the longitudinal axis of offices to the West and laboratories to the East. They communicate by a corridor in which houses all the technical equipment.
The STUDENT HOUSE building with 240 sleeping places stands to the south-east of the main Campus square.
The halls of residence have been split into two compact offset structures connected by a low-rise entrance, in order to make better use of the surface area without creating excessive height. On the ground floor, the single-floor transparent entrance connects the two towers of the halls of residence leaving a view open over the surrounding
fields. The roof houses a large green terrace, an open-air extension of the communal kitchen and the study rooms located on the first floor. The ground floor provides a reception area and other communal areas available for students: cafés, a restaurant, fitness room and recreation room. Externally near the entrance, the offset buildings create a large square brought to life by the café’s tables and the other nearby public activities.
The underlying principle of the project is based on a composition of volumes of warm and material tones, opening at the skylights to allow the entrance of natural light or to protect the glazed parts from direct sun irradiation, in a game of different heights depending on exposure.
For the exterior appearance of the campus buildings, it has been chosen a grès tile in warm brown tones, with a natural surface.
Established in 2005 by Filippo Taidelli, FTA is a multidisciplinary architectural and design firm based in Milan. Operating both in Italy and abroad, FTA develops integrated design projects in collaboration with a team of selected specialists. FTA has realized renovation and ground-up projects of various scale, spanning residential and commercial to office, service and mixed use spaces, exhibition and industrial design. FTA’s activity is focused on research and innovative intervention in the Urban retrofit field for existing buildings as well as in the Healthcare area.
FTA’s philosophy is characterized by energetically efficient consciousness and sensibility toward context and topology. The firm aims to implement a delicate balance between innovative technologies and the use of traditional materials – rendering the complexity of integrated design into its most essential creative expression. FTA is also engaged in research and education directed toward sustainable and interior design.