Cernusco sul Naviglio || Italy
The Aurora - V. Bachelet school has a roughly H-shaped plan, although the sides are slightly out of sync. The middle section of the H is a large glazed building that acts as the entrance and provides access to the various floors in the two wings, including the basement level. The two-storey northern wing, with classrooms and labs, is used for the primary school. The three-storey southern building houses the middle school, with classrooms, spaces for individual work, educational laboratories, administration and management offices, the library and meeting and interview rooms. The basement is where many of the shared facilities are, including the school canteen and gym, as well as the installations and warehousing rooms, and some parking space. The classrooms are laid out in a line. On the upper floors of both sections a side corridor that acts
rather like an open balcony connects all these rooms, providing evident visual integration of spaces and elements. This integration is highlighted by the common entrance that regulates access and manages the flow of people through the "sculpture-like" staircase leading into the learning sanctuary of the school.
The double-height glazed entrance provides a metaphorical merging of didactic goals and highlights the sensitive nature of the design. The meaning of the transparency of this space is clear, especially located at the visual heart and objective centre - compared to the longitudinal wings - of this learning institute. The entrance is protected by a square structure in bare architectural concrete. The east and west-facing glazing is segmented by a grid of external metal fixtures to form a geometric pattern where the heights
of the windows vary, but the widths remain constant. The same pattern is used for the interior. Horizontal and vertical wooden segments highlight the shape, which is "reinforced" by the use of the matt and projecting material. The manifest wooden pattern used for glazing in the entrance hall is matched by the visually evident use of wooden uprights and exposed glulam beams. The hall and the upper corridors reveal the density of the structural supports and non-linear pattern of the underside of the roof, with an undulating design that enlivens the view of the ceiling. The corridors leading to the classrooms introduce a key architectural feature as, from these areas, one can take in the true size, spatial richness and depth of the building, resulting in an expansion of space and the formation of an ideal place from which to understand the
complex development of the various relationships.
The elevations of the two longitudinal buildings are practically twins. Their east and west facing facades are protected by brise soleil structures of micro-perforated aluminium panels that are slightly curved and move vertically. These are fixed onto uprights at a set distance. The brise soleil acts as an elegant filter and creates an intricate pattern of light across the entire facade. The roof, clad with aluminium panels and equipped with a photovoltaic system, protrudes with a marked acute angle from the volume of the middle school wing. This is a unique element that becomes the architectural and decorative hallmark of this complex. Francesco Pagliari
Location: Cernusco dul Naviglio, Milano
Client: L'Aurora Bachelet
Gross Floor Area: 11.900 m2
Design Team: Tobia Marcotti, Filippo Resteghini, Chiara Mazzotti, Bruno Marcotti, Mariarita Lombardo, Mario Castelli
Architectural Supervision: ITI Studio
Design and Management of Structural Work: Structurama s.r.l. - Massimiliano Vernaleone, Luca Negri, Fabio Raimondi, Andrea Ripamonti
Design and Management of Installation Work: Ebner associates Italia - Michele Villani, Paolo Picozzi
Contractor: Impresa Edile Mariani
Doors and Window Frames: Falar
Timber Structures: Moretti Interholz
Mechanical and Electrical Installations: Ambrosiana Impianti
Metal Roofing: Kalzip
Plasterboard Walls and Ceilings: Gyprok Saint-Gobain
Glass: AGC Glass
Photography: © Daniele Domenicali
ITIStudio Itistudio was established through the coming together of Bruno Marcotti, with his background in the design and planning of large healthcare complexes in Italy and Latin America, and Giuseppe Marchesi, with his background in plant management (at Niguarda Hospital in Milan) and sterilization. Technological integration, and achieving the highest levels of quality and reliability have always been the guiding principles of the studio. In 2003, Itistudio was registered as an engineering company.
Born in Milan in 1946, Marcotti graduated in architecture from Milan Polytechnic in 1971, where he was a member of the academic staff until 1981. Between 1976 and 1983, he was involved in major design and building projects for Hosp. Ital S.p.a. in Italy, Latin America and Africa, including feasibility studies, the renovation and construction of numerous surgical, maternity and intensive care units, new hospitals, as well as mobile medical units for helicopters and trucks. Since 1983, he has owned ITI.
Marchesi was born in Sesto San Giovanni (Milan) in 1940. He graduated in architecture from Milan Polytechnic in 1981. From 1962 to 1985, he held various installation maintenance positions at Milan’s Ospedale Maggiore in Milan, then the Niguarda Ca’ Granda Hospital Authority, including architect with the installations division, participating in the design and construction of intensive care, cardiac-coronary, hemodynamic, sterilization and dialysis units, as well as wards and operating theatres. In 1992, he was appointed scientific editor of the journal Tecnica Ospedaliera and became the tireless organizer of international conferences in the areas of sterilization and hospital issues. From 1985 until his death in 1999, he was joint-owner of ITI.
Maria Rita Lombardo
Lombardo was born in Milan in 1948. After studying fine arts, in 1971 she graduated in architecture from Milan Polytechnic. She is involved in the design of school buildings, and community and health facilities, and also taught for several years at the Istituto Europeo di Design. In the residential and hospitality fields, she focuses on restoration and interior design, with her work primarily based in Milan and Lombardy. In Italy’s Val d’Aosta region, she is involved in rebuilds, particularly of the traditional rascard cabins. She became a partner of ITI in 2003.
Marcotti was born in Milan in 1976, graduating in architecture from the Leonardo campus of Milan Polytechnic in 2000. In 1997, he joined MCCGLC, where he was involved in the construction of exhibition stands and computer-aided design. Together with Matteo Gatto and MCCGLC, in 1999 he established BTL, which was involved in web design, courses in CAD, graphics and 3D modelling. These early experiences gave Marcotti an appreciation of the meticulous attention to detail required by the entire design process as well as a sense of wonder at the process of giving form to an idea. He joined ITI in 2001 and is involved in projects ranging from feasibility study to works management. In 2003 he became a partner of ITI.