Palazzo Italia

Structure, Shape and Space

Italian Palace external viewPadiglione Italia Expo Milano 2015

A Biodynamic Forest at the Heart of the Milan Expo 2015

Owing to its location and imposing architecture, Palazzo Italia was one of the landmarks of the Expo: marking one of the four cardinal points, north, it served as the backdrop of the Cardo. 

Italy Pavilion Expo 2015Padiglione Italia Expo Milano 2015

The Palazzo was designed by Nemesi&Partners, in association with Proger and BMS Progetti (for the structural engineering and installations) and Prof. Livio De Santoli (for the sustainability of the building).

The architectural firm won the international planning competition launched by Expo 2015 S.p.A. in April 2013, despite fierce competition from over sixty other firms from around the world.

The architects Michele Molè e Susanna Tradati drew inspiration from the concept of an “urban forest”. They envisaged the outer shell of the building as a ramified “skin”, evoking both a primitive and technologically advanced image.

Italian Palace - facede's detailPadiglione Italia Expo Milano 2015

The outer "skin" of Palazzo Italia is clad in more than 700 BIODYNAMIC concrete panels with Italcementi's patented TX Active technology. When the material comes into contact with light, it can "capture" pollution in the air, transforming it into inert salts and reducing smog levels. The mortar used is 80% recycled aggregates, including scrap material from marble quarries in Carrara that helps add more luster than in traditional white cement.

Italian Palace - Courtyard viewPadiglione Italia Expo Milano 2015

The Roof 

The roof designed by Nemesi for Palazzo Italia is an innovative "sail" realized by Stahlbau Pichler. It’s an interpretation of a forest canopy, with photovoltaic glass and flat and curved geometric shapes. Together with the building's envelope of "branches", it’s a manifest expression of innovation in design and technology. The roof reaches its architectural height above the inner piazza, where a massive glazed conical skylight "hangs" over the square and the central steps, radiating natural light. 

Italian Palace - Courtyard viewPadiglione Italia Expo Milano 2015

The figures show just how successful the Italy Pavilion has been, with over 2 million people going to the "House of Italian Identity" exhibition in Palazzo Italia.

Other figures show the incredible Italian success at the Expo, with 266 high ranking Italian and foreign dignitaries visiting Palazzo Italia. This includes 60 Heads of State and Government.

Italian Pavilion ExhibitionPadiglione Italia Expo Milano 2015

Italian Palace - night viewPadiglione Italia Expo Milano 2015

Credits: Story

Nemesi & Partners Srl, Arch. Michele Molè Founder and Director and Arch. Susanna Tradati Partner Associate and Project Manager

Proger SpA- Bms Progetti Srl, Engineering and Cost Management
Prof. Ing. Livio De Santoli, Sustainability energy

Italcementi SpA and Styl-Comp Group, branched facade
Stahlbau Pichler Srl, sail covering

Credits: All media
The story featured may in some cases have been created by an independent third party and may not always represent the views of the institutions, listed below, who have supplied the content.
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