The new San Giuliano Shopping Centre in San Giuliano Milanese has a sales floor area of 25,500 sq m across two storeys and a two-level parking lot (22,000 sq m). In such a complex, heat and smoke control is a significant issue and, in this case, the designers turned to Caoduro for help. In response, Caoduro created a specific, comprehensive design for each part of the shopping centre, complete with sizes and a range of solutions and products that would ensure regulatory compliance. Caoduro was able to offer such an inclusive solution by leveraging the power of the analysis and simulation software it had developed in conjunction with Padua University.
The differing sections had different requirements. The parking area needed a system to remove the exhaust and other polluting fumes released by cars. J-FAC jet fans were adopted to ensure all unwanted gas was constantly pushed into the aspiration area so it could be removed naturally or mechanically. These devices not only help rid the air of many common pollutants, but also aid smoke and heat control in the event of fire by directing air flow towards the extraction points. In the supermarket and shopping mall proper, it was necessary to deal with a large-space layout, where open sections often “linked” the different floors, while escalators and galleries provided the physical connection points. In short, there were numerous natural areas for smoke build-up in a fire. The solution to ensuring safe, smoke-free zones to evacuate people to while also limiting the presence of combustible products in clearly defined, easy-to-control spaces was to place smoke and heat exhausters in roof areas offering natural ventilation. ENFC Smoke Out exhausters were used on the roof, while ENFC Smoke Shed and ENFC Smoke Out Vert were adopted for the walls. In the ground-floor areas, it was necessary to use forced heat and smoke exhausters with aspiration vents. Integrating smoke curtains into the false ceiling made it possible to divide the space into compartments, ensuring that any smoke would be concentrated in a specific area and that the lower sections of the rooms would remain smoke free. These also make it possible to contain and remove smoke from individual stores when a fire is localised. If a fire breaks out in the connecting areas, both the forced and natural exhausters are used to clear the smoke.
The close cooperation between Caoduro and the designers was the secret to this complex project that uses a wide range of quality products. It was also an opportunity to show how powerful client-designer cooperation can be, and how central this is to developing new solutions.