BIG / bjarke ingels group has beaten proposals from firms including snohetta and MVRDV in an international competition to build the san pellegrino flagship factory in northern italy. nestled within an alpine backdrop, the €90 million scheme will serve as an extension to the original plant where water has been freshly bottled since 1899.
all images © bjarke ingels group / san pellegrino
known for its high-end sparkling mineral water, san pellegrino’s new home will be situated within a 17,000 square meter facility that will simultaneously embrace the local architecture and enhance the existing. BIG’s winning proposal will be defined by the use of the arch — a feature that architect bjarke ingels describes as ‘the most elegant way to create a big span.’ the series of expanding and contracting internal archways will introduce spaces that become vaults, turnings, arcades, and pergolas.
the building is designed to embrace and enhance the architecture of the existing factory
‘we wanted to create a continuity of experience from the production to the consumption of the water, from the preparation to the enjoyment,’ explains bjarke ingels. as well as facilitating the bottling plant and factory, visitors will be able to learn about san pellegrino’s history and process. in addition, a giant geological sample will be placed at the heart of the campus to represent the water’s 30-year journey through layers of rock to obtain the minerals and flavor stored inside each green bottle.
natural mineral water has been bottled in the same place since 1899
‘we are trying to take all the elements that are inherent to the san pellegrino experience and the quality of the mineral water and condense them into an architecture that is both functional and experiential, both rational and poetic.’ – bjarke ingels
at the center of the facility, a giant geological sample represents san pellegrino water’s journey
‘we think this project is very consistent with our values and heritage. its focus on purity, nature and transparency is in line with our mission of ensuring the future of water,’ comments stefano agostini, CEO and president of san pellegrino ‘the proposed arc approach integrates the existing plant into the surrounding valley, allowing one to visually experience the power and purity of nature. BIG’s proposal works with and enhances the territory where s.pellegrino originates, adding a modern touch of style’.
large glass windows frame the natural mountainous landscape
the design evolves from a simple archway, forming expanding and contracting tunnels
the project’s auditorium
visitors can visit the factory and learn about the company’s history
the experience seeks to tell the story behind the production of the water
the bottling plant
the brand’s signage is prominently positioned
an aerial view of the planned development
name: s.pellegrino flagship factory
client: san pellegrino s.p.a.
collaborators: atelier verticale, west8, schlaich bergermann partner, front, arup, squint/opera, mic, big ideas, studio piero castiglioni
size: 17,500 sqm
location: san pellegrino terme, bergamo, italy
status: in progress
partners in charge: bjarke ingels, thomas christoffersen
project leader: jelena vucic
team: lorenz krisai, edda steingrimsdottir, stephen steckel, julie kaufman, wells barber, derek wong, yang yang chen, terrence chew, christopher tron, lawrence olivier mahadoo, veronica acosta, ashton stare, gaurav janey, maria eugenia dominguez bello, supakrit wongviboonsin, adi krainer, josiah poland, jennifer wood, kelly neill, maki matsubayashi, francesca portesine, veronica moretti, gabriella den elzen, denys kozak, kristian hindsberg