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B5 Office Building, Milan, Italy

Wednesday 07 Mar 2012

Greatness in greyscale

All photos: Paolo Rosselli 
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19/04/12 Arvind, Pune
I can understand the difficulties faced by the Architects in getting through this project from design board to completion.
This black beauty is wonderful.
Ar. A. V. Joshi-Pune-India


Monochrome B5 Office Building completed in restructuring of Milan industrial area 

As part of Boeri Studio’s master plan of a former industrial site in Milan, young architecture practice Barreca & La Varra has completed a black, white and grey office building for RCS Mediagroup. As with commercial properties for all creative companies, the brief suggested a dynamic working environment and Barreca & La Varra delivered.

This stylish, highly textured structure spans 2,340 sq m and incorporates active spaces for editorial offices, photography studios and multimedia areas, wrapped in a 5 storey glass façade interspersed with opaque black panels in low relief. The architects explain: “We were interested in the unity and continuity of matter. Thus, once the first building on the site was designed with a glass matrix façade, it seemed natural to continue to pursue an objective of material homogeneity.”

B5 sits alongside numerous other commercial buildings on a redeveloped industrial site. First completed was Building C which is comprised of an 18 storey tower and anchoring courtyard on the edge of a nearby river. All structures are part of an overall master plan by Boeri Studio and offer differing architectural aesthetics but retain a central, overarching theme.

Barreca & La Varra’s building has achieved ‘classe A’ (the equivalent of LEED Platinum) and sports manually operable façade panels set at 90° to the wall, which enable great flexibility to the building’s users who are able to adapt the exterior shading system to their individual needs.

In explanation of his effective sustainable design, Gianandrea Barreca details: “The entire building, including the ground floor facing the inner court, is covered with serigraphed and colourful glass panels and vertical screens in the shape of ‘fins’ that emerge from the edges of the façade. The search for a balance between these and other architectural elements, like the black string-course, create for an ever-changing and dynamic façade.”

Key Facts

Status Completed
Value 0(m€)
Were you involved in this scheme?
Barreca & La Varra

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