Chinese architecture practice MAD has unveiled a design for a new Mobility and Logistics Center near Milan, Italy, which features a set of sculptural, polished metal stairs.
Named MoLo (short for Mobility and Logistics Centre), the design is set along the western border of Milan’s Innovation District (MIND).
It is a recently developed neighborhood that combines cutting-edge scientific research,
education, business and leisure facilities northwest of central Milan, Italy.
The studio, led by Chinese architect Ma Yansong,
has unveiled designs for a massive portal complex distinguished by its sleek and fluid staircases.
The complex is 28.5 meters high, 170 meters long, and 50 meters wide.
MAD is also working with Italian architect Andrea Noni, Open Project,
and Italian engineering firm Progeca on the project.
The MAD design also includes a total outdoor area of 68,800 square meters and a total area of 11,195 square meters,
and combines several facilities over an area of more than 11 square miles.
MoLo is designed as a welcoming entrance and educational space for transportation-related issues,
where visitors can drop in their cars to explore the area on foot and see the innovative transportation technology in person.
The building also has seven levels above ground and one underground,
including 3,000 square meters of commercial space on the ground floor, in addition to laboratories,
offices and a supermarket.
It’s designed to be visible from almost all angles,
but the “fantastic five-story parking building is the cornerstone of MoLo,” according to MAD.
Thus the five-storey car park can accommodate 1,500 cars,
and the car park structure is designed as a gateway for those arriving from Rho and other major roads along the western half of the Mind.
Create an exchange tunnel
The complex design aims to solve this separation with a public exchange tunnel that culminates in a sculpted set of polished metal staircases,
since MoLo is located on the border between two municipalities.
Like many other projects by MAD Architects – including the Gardenhouse in Beverly Hills and One River North in Denver,
Colorado – the new MAD complex is designed as an “integration of nature and architecture”.
For example, the main facades are covered with lush vegetation that will beautify the neighborhood while capturing airborne carbon.
The use of vertical landscaping as a design element also allows MoLo to blend visually into the green landscape of its surroundings.
In addition, there is an open gallery near the public exchange tunnel that cuts diagonally across the ground floor along the center of the building.
In an effort to blur the boundaries between indoor and outdoor while actually connecting MoLo to nearby Rho-Arese Park.
The gallery ceiling also features a large cloud-like sculpture that undulates in the direction of pedestrian traffic.
The MoLo building is also planned to be assembled within a precast concrete frame structure,
in response to the new district’s commitment to sustainability and technological innovations for the 21st century.
In accordance with the Design Manufacturing and Assembly Method (DfMA) – a standard to ensure a streamlined and efficient construction process that reduces wastage of materials and labor hours.
The complex will be developed in accordance with the LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) green building certification program.
It will feature a field of photovoltaic panels extending over 8000 square meters on the upper roofs,
which will serve as an abundant source of renewable energy for the surrounding area.
The MoLo is one of the most recent MAD projects designed in Europe after several installations for Milan Design Week
and 71 Via Boncompagni, an adaptable reuse project located in the heart of Milan.
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