Valenza || Italy
The new Bulgari jewelry manufacturing center was recently inaugurated in the famed goldsmith district of Valenza, with the design by Open Project. The complex covers 15,000 sq.m in a deliberate merging of tradition and innovation through two studiously different buildings. The old Cascina dell’Orefice - thought to be the oldest goldsmith workshop in Valenza - was revamped and extended to become the Glass House, a completely glazed construction that follows the original silhouette in a contemporary vision. The other volume is a new build to house manufacturing facilities. Stahlbau Pichler was involved in the creation of the Glass House and the steel and glass skin of the plant. The elegant, iconic Glass House rises 13 meters, with a narrow rectangular plan (5.65x17.2 m). The pitched roof makes the building look like a “narrow”
house, although with heightened elegance and lightness because of the glazing and absence of internal vertical and horizontal divisions. This volume has spaces for meetings and events, a symbolic representation of both the local goldsmith tradition and Maison Bulgari’s vision of a future that beginnings with drawing on tradition. The interior is decked out with architectural and design elements in true Bulgari style. The hall flooring and stairs to the underground section are made of Palissandro Classico marble, while the metal cladding on the double entrance door is in Pantheon style, guiding visitors into the foyer leading to the conference area. Nine parallel frames of S355 steel provide the basic structure to hold up the high-performance glazing and roofing. This customized design had to be daring both in the use of steel components and glazing. The manufacturing plant, rising next to the Glass House, has three floors above ground around a 600 sq.m central courtyard that acts as the ventilation and natural light hub as well as providing a space for people to relax. The building is surrounded by a perforated metallic skin 8 meters from the exterior walls to increase protection and privacy, without blocking the landscape views. Interference coloring was used for the skin, a complex process that creates a variable chromatic perception as the light and viewer’s position change. The metal sheets for the envelope were then decorated with three different patterns and placed to obscure the view of the lower section, with the perforation size increasing progressively upwards. Environmental sustainability and energy efficiency were essential to the whole project, with validation coming from the LEED certification. The provenance and choice of building materials was central to this achievement, along with the careful differentiation of all waste. The final “cherry” on the top is the series of comforts and benefits for employees, ranging from sustainable transport solutions to specific instruments to guarantee internal environmental quality.
Via Edison, 15 - I - 39100 Bolzano
Tel. +39 0471 065000 - Fax +39 0471 065001
E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org - www.stahlbaupichler.com