Via Mercalli 23
University of Milan

Place Milan
Country Italy
Client University of Milan
Team Politecnica Ingegneria ed Architettura with Studio Valle Progettazioni
Assignment Preliminary, definitive, detailed design phases for architecture, structures, MEP, health and safety coordination in the design and construction phases, site supervision
Dates of services 2013 - 2018
Dates of construction 2020 - 2021
Project area 7.263 m2

The Project

The project for the recovery of the building complex of Via Mercalli 23 is a real example of restoration and re-vamping of a disused cultural property, becoming, once completed, a strategic and essential element for the development and enhancement of the entire neighboring area.

The building, located in the central area of the City of Milan, features a clear and precise volumetric articulation that has changed over time its intended use, meeting different functional needs and undergoing transformations and adaptations not always aligned to its architectural quality.

The three bodies that make up the complex, all of 6 or 7 floors, arranged at right angles to each other, develop, through their longitudinal intersection, two outer courtyards and a monumental inner courtyard.

The Project has moved with a view to respecting the historical relationship between the monument and the city, preserving the historical structure of the complex and preserving its identity and architectural dignity. The outcomes resulting from an initial phase of investigation and analysis, together with the will of the Heritage Authorities and the Client, have represented the guidelines of the entire project, which features, among their fixed points, the preservation of the building and the decorative material characteristics of the entire Palace.

The original interior spaces have been recovered and resized to meet the new functional requirements, sometimes eliminating or repositioning partitions that had been created over time. The interior spaces, thus recovered, become ready to accommodate new workstations, offices, meeting rooms and study rooms for the University of Milan.

The general consolidation and adaptation of all the structures to the new requirements, including the complete replacement of the secondary warping of all the roofing, were enriched with the construction of a new underground area under the Northern courtyard, to be used as a new archive and storage area.

The new internal distribution has taken into account all the needs expressed by the Client and has provided for the construction of three new staircases, the repositioning of the toilets and the adaptation of accessibility for all types of users with new paths and dedicated accesses.

As to MEP engineering, all the proposed solutions are aimed at maximum flexibility, standardization and simplicity of operation, for a simple control and immediate performance for energy saving.

The objective of the restoration project, therefore, was to combine the best possible use of the building, innovative design technologies – a project entirely developed in BIM – and the requests of the client regarding the history of the building and the enhancement of its characteristics.

Moreover, everything was carried out with a view to eco-sustainability, also to guarantee the future occupants of the complex an environment as healthy and safe as possible.