In May 2012 a terrible earthquake shook a large area of the Italian territory in the Emilia Romagna region , primarily affecting the provinces of Modena, Ferrara and Reggio Emilia, and lower Lombardy, the province of Mantua, up to Veneto, the province of Rovigo. The three main shocks, which took place on May 20 and 29 and on June 3, had different epicentres but all related to the same seismic district, amplifying their devastating consequences and causing great damage to the production of a territory worth 2% of Italy’s GDP.
“Rebuild well and better”, the slogan that always finds meaning in the “after” of such terrible events, has found concrete applications in this area. Through a non-profit trust, “Nuova Polis”, a diverse representation of civil entities (bodies, institutions, associations, companies and ordinary citizens) combined their efforts to restore the original “beauty” of this rich territory, starting with five small architectures. Five projects to support the communities affected by the earthquake, that aim to help mend social ties and keep the centres active. The Reconstruction WorkShop (RWS) coordinated by architect Mario Cucinella and by the Mario Cucinella Architects studio, is the design and implementation laboratory for the five works, in which six architects under the age of 30 participated: Arianna Balboni, Mirco Bianchini, Francesco Galli, Valentino Gareri, Federico La Piccirella and Clelia Zappalà, under the coordination of Marco dell’Agli. Similar to the 18 contractors who were in charge of the buildings, the young professionals were selected taking into consideration their proximity to the area in which the interventions took place.
The 5 RWS projects, the five “beauty interventions” so to speak are: the “Music House” in Pieve di Cento (BO), the “Multifunctional Arts and Culture Centre” in Bondeno (FE), the “Hub Oltrepò Mantovano Recreation Centre” in Quistello (MN), the “Dance School” in Reggiolo (RE) and the last to be inaugurated, the “Nuovo Picchio Social Health Centre” in San Felice sul Panaro (MO).
The “Nuovo Picchio” Social Health Centre is a residential facility for 22 guests with severe disabilities. The building is arranged on two levels, with all daytime activity areas and laboratories on the ground floor and bedrooms on the upper floor. Externally, the building appears to be made up of four separate volumes interconnected with one other, while the interior consists of a unified space. Aesthetically, the building recalls a typical barn of the agricultural landscape of San Felice sul Panaro. Moreover, the pitched roof immediately brings to mind the archetypal image of a house, communicating a strong sense of security to its guests. The garden, designed to follow the principles of a healing garden, in turn becomes a therapeutic space that promotes the well-being of users.
Images courtesy of Mario Cucinella Architects:
(1,2) The “Nuovo Picchio Social Health Centre” ph. Daniele Domenicali
(3,4) The “Music House” in Pieve di Cento ph. Moreno Maggi
(5,6) The “Multifunctional Arts and Culture Centre” in Bondeno ph. Daniele Domenicali
(7,8) The “Hub Oltrepò Mantovano Youth Centre” ph. Matteo Massarenti
(9, 10) The “Music School” in Reggiolo ph. Bellipario Geraldina, Fausto Franzosi
Location: San Felice sul Panaro (MO), Italy
Beneficiary: Municipality of San Felice sul Panaro
CONCEPT AND PROJECT DEVELOPMENT
Mario Cucinella Architects: Mario Cucinella, Marco Dell’Agli with Mirco Bianchini
Project team: Valentino Gareri, Federico La Piccirella, Arianna Balboni, Francesco Galli, Clelia Zappalà
Visual: Paris Render Studio
Photo credit: Daniele Domenicali
Mechanical design: Riccardo Giannoni, Engineer
Electrical planning: P.S.
Structural design: Engineering Departments
Calculation: Roberto Guidi, Surveyor
Fire prevention consultancy: Roberto Guidi, Surveyor
Acoustic advice: Gabriele Raffellini, Engineer
Landscaping design: GREENCURE landscape & healing garden
Architectural project: Arch. Mauro Frate
Mechanical design: Roberto Carboni, Engineer
Electrical planning: Diego Caldarini, Engineer
Structural design: Sabrina Aldrovandi, Engineer
Parent company: Baschieri srl
Mandator: Alcide Stabellini srl