Ivory project Milan COIMA SGR Piuarch
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Ivory Milano ‒ the Isotta Fraschini ex-factory becomes a business hub

This redevelopment project backed by COIMA will convert the 1950s former car factory into an innovative and high-tech offices complex


Ivory project Milan COIMA SGR Piuarch
By Editorial Staff -

A complex of innovative, technologically sophisticated and highly eco-sustainable offices will soon be taking shape between San Siro and City Life. This is the Ivory project: redevelopment of a portion of the Isotta Fraschini former automotive manufacturing plant, which is being converted into a business hub set to become one of the most energy-efficient and cutting-edge centers in Lombardy's capital city.

Leading the investment is COIMA SGR, a group that for some time now has being actively operating to bring new life through urban and architectural regeneration involving disused real estate and areas requiring attention. In this case the former car factory on Piazzale Zavattari, dating from the 1950s, will be upgraded and converted into office premises thanks to the concept developed by the Milan-based architecture studio Piuarch, appointed by COIMA for this task.

Ivory will provide offices featuring innovative design, located in one of Milan's most vibrant and fastest expanding areas, set to attract start-up firms, multinationals and investment groups seeking unusual, shared workspaces preferably in mixed-use areas. The project will in fact see the upgrading of 14,000 m2 of office space on 12 floors above ground, accompanied by 1,400 m2 of panoramic terraces, multi-purpose spaces and retail areas.


Ivory Milano - Piuarch Rendering by and courtesy of Piuarch

>>> Also explore Corso Como Place in Porta Nuova, the design winning THE PLAN Award 2022 in the category Innovation and Design / Completed


Ivory Milano: simple, stylish and functional units

The Piuarch design involves literally wrapping the existing building in a 'double skin': large expanses of glass are fitted between metal features and vertical lines to endow the edifice with a contemporary feel, camouflaging that a few architectural elements have been salvaged from the original structure. This preserves the ex-factory's slender vertical identity, which is further accentuated thanks to a second grid of pillars to back up the existing one ‒ an addition that allows the alternation of spacious terraces and balconies on every other floor, which also extend the workspaces outwards.

Made up of different heights, the façade will bring dynamism to the edifice: openings and loggias allow natural light to directly penetrate the interiors, making them bright and alive. Ivory will also stand as a model for multi-purpose and versatile spaces ‒ a place for creative and group work in flexible open spaces that, alongside the retail and food & beverage zone, will enable people to spend their days in stimulating yet relaxing contexts.

Ivory Milano - Piuarch Rendering by and courtesy of Piuarch


>>> See Torre Gioia 22 in Porta Nuova, the largest nZEB building in Italy


A central role in the design is played by the open-air spaces, which are present on all levels of the building. The 8th and 10th floors host two large terraces opening onto Milan's skyline. These will be carefully designed, including a focus on restoration ecology to improve the area's microclimate and to integrate the building within its surrounding context right from the ground floor.

"The design aims to reuse and revive this 1950s factory, taking elements of the original project and combining them with nature, community, workplaces and technology to create a distinctive and sustainable new building that provides offices, terraces and open and closed spaces. This next-generation edifice will be highly energy-efficient and will feature quality spaces for use by people: comfortable flexible settings will open up towards the outdoor terraces with stunning views of the city and become spaces for socializing and interacting, which are so important in today’s workplaces."
Gino Garbellini, partner at the Piuarch studio


Ivory Milano - Piuarch Rendering by and courtesy of Piuarch



An eco-sustainable building using renewable sources

The Ivory upgrade could only be an eco-sustainable project featuring great energy efficiency. The building designed by Piuarch will rework every detail of the previous facilities so as to achieve the highest well-being levels to respect the top ESG standards ‒ a feature taking it to satisfy the requirements of the LEED Gold®WELL Gold® and WiredScore Gold® certification. The choice of materials too is the result of careful study and research: the designers have opted, where possible, for environmentally friendly and locally sourced products with Cradle to Cradle® certification and based on circular economy strategies.

Over 65% of Ivory's energy needs will be covered by renewable sources. In fact, a geothermal heating and cooling system will be installed, along with a photovoltaic one on the roof and an innovative ventilation system for optimal air quality in the workspaces. This latter system will also enable water wastage to be kept to a minimum by reusing it for irrigation and by adopting indoor/outdoor water efficiency strategies.


Ivory Milano - Piuarch Rendering by and courtesy of Piuarch


The communal spaces and the offices will be cooled using chilled beam technology, which allows hot and cold air to circulate evenly, entirely avoiding the need for energy-consuming conditioning systems, implementing what is known as free cooling.

"The redevelopment of number 12 Piazzale Zavattari is aligned with the value-add strategy deployed by COIMA’s Odyssey Fund, which aims to revive and reuse buildings to create new-generation assets that ensure the highest standards in sustainability and comfort for occupants. Conceived to act in synergy with the area's existing redevelopment projects, Ivory is located in an area of Milan that is well-connected to the public and private transport network and is set to become one of the city’s most important new business and lifestyle hubs. This project confirms COIMA's strategy aimed at building reuse, which in the last 12 months has led to the completion of projects comprising more than 50,000 m2 with an investment value of over €400 million. We are also committed to developing a further 140,000 m2 with an investment value of around €1 billion."
Matteo Ravà, Head of Fund & Asset Management at COIMA


>>> What are Milan's upcoming urban regeneration scenarios? Find out in Politecnica's volume Next Milano volume. 2015-2030 urban regeneration, written by Riccardo Dell'Osso and Giancarlo Tancredi


Location: Milan, Italy
Architect: Piuarch
Developer: COIMA SGR
Gross Floor Area: 14000 m2

Rendering by and courtesy of Piuarch

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