La Manufacture - Celine, a permeable architecture that frames the Chianti hills
Lying on the Tuscan hills and divided into rigorous and elegant volumes that interpret its shape, La Manufacture is the new production site of the Celine maison in Italy, specialized in leather goods. The building, with 5,200 square meters intended to accommodate 250 artisans, is located in the municipality of Radda in Chianti, in the province of Siena, built above an abandoned industrial plant.
Fully open to the landscape, La Manufacture is a permeable architecture that frames the Chianti hills, between beautiful vineyards and small rural villages, offering unusual views that benefit everyone involved in the work process. The main goal of the project was to favor the view of the artisans towards the landscape, so that they could have constant visual contact with nature and with the natural progression of the day.
With this project, we tried to develop a building characterized by high quality standards and relatively low construction costs. The architectural choices, such as the double glass facade, embrace the identity of the French brand through the use of an essential design that is sensitive to the environmental qualities of the valuable tuscan location.
The double glass facade allows a constant kaleidoscope of reflections between the surrounding environment and the building, constantly adjusting its color according to the weather, the sun, and the changing colors of each season.
The project adapts to the landscape by interpreting the orographic conformation on which it lays. The main body is arranged in a south-east direction, but then it rotates by a ninety degrees angle going in a south-west direction, where it makes the most of the relationship with the countryside fields, both in terms of view and use of natural light. The entire volume, made of concrete, steel, glass and alveolar polycarbonate, appears as levitating from the ground, housing below a parking area (4000 square meters) on the lowest level. Located above this level are the warehouse area (1000 square meters) and the production area (3000 square meters) in which artisans can enjoy the most beautiful view. If a direct visual relationship with the Tuscan landscape is reserved for the workspace, the raised rear area is dedicated to the offices, service areas and management, extending over approximately 1,200 square meters spread over three floors, located in a privileged position and directly connected to the production spaces.
The theme of transparency, obtained through the combination of glass walls and suspended gray glass blocks, brings with itself all the symbolic value of the great works of architecture of the contemporary age. The large suspended walls in gray concrete glass have the function of regulating the shading of the interior spaces, allowing natural light to filter into the production environment. Not all of these walls are straight, some of them are slightly curved, making a contrast with the regular internal spaces. The temperature difference that is created between this double skin generates convective motions, like those of a solar greenhouse, thus exploiting all its thermal characteristics that lead to energy savings and greater well-being the workers.
This choice also allows greater shading of the interior spaces and expresses a greater sensitivity towards the shape of the surrounding hills, also giving the entire architecture of La Manufacture a specific and unique identity.
Great attention was paid towards workflows and the design and sizing of the work spaces to allow optimal organization according to LEAN principles.
The production sites are acquiring more and more value as "identity laboratories" of a brand and the presence of Celine in Radda in Chianti seems to confirm the existence of a privileged connection between this Italian area and luxury brands, by virtue of the landscape surrounding and the very high professionalism of the craftsmanship present. In the factory, located outside the industrial areas and inserted in an environment of environmental value, a search for quality, beauty and well-being, a renewed dialogue with the territory and the environment, presents as a new occasion for architectural experimentation.
Radda in Chianti (Siena)
arc. Fabio Barluzzi, arch. Barbara Ponticelli
Ing. Ferrari S.p.A.
Interprofessionale _ arch. Cristina Matteucci, Structure Eng. Studio Ballardini
Metrooffice Architetti has been founded in 2006 by Fabio Barluzzi and Barbara Ponticelli as architectural office based in Florence. Since 2012 the professional activity has focused on the rebranding of some companies particularly involved in the fashion world. The work aims to make the identity of the industrial realities concerned coincide with the needs of those who work in the production space. At the beginning of his career, Fabio Barluzzi worked as architect in Kevin Roche Office (Massachusetts), analyzing Roche’s approach to office space design. After several years experience in residential and retail architecture, in 2009 he cofounded MOA with Barbara Ponticelli. Fabio is Professor in the Interior Design course at the Kent State University and at IED, both based in Florence. After graduating in 1998, Barbara spent 3 years on Firenze Progetti Office. From 2001 to 2006 she worked in z-ax architetti office and, after 9 years of collaboration with Fabio, decided to found the office.