in 2015, milan’s fondazione prada opened its doors to the public for the first time. rem koolhaas’ OMA had completely transformed the site, converting what was once a gin distillery on the southern edge of the city into a bold and diverse complex of challenging exhibition venues. upon inauguration, the 19,000 square meter-campus comprised seven existing buildings and two new ones. however, one of the site’s most important components was still under wraps — a nine-storey tower designed to display the foundation’s permanent collection.

fondazione prada torre
the former gin distillery is located on the southern edge of the city
image © designboom (also main image)

 

 

now, two years after fondazione prada first opened, the final part of OMA’s ambitious project is nearing completion. named ‘torre’, or ‘tower’, the soaring structure rises above the neighborhood, protruding as a prominent landmark. visible from afar, the tower’s irregular geometry follows a structural logic. ‘the tower is built from large-span concrete beams that alternate in orientation from level to level, creating an alternating open/closed pattern on each façade,’ says the team behind the project. ‘these beams are tied to a slender concrete core which contains all the services and circulation.’

fondazione prada torre
the nine-storey tower will display the foundation’s permanent collection
image © designboom

 

 

the tower is divided vertically into four sections, with two wedge-shaped plans following the site’s outline, and two rectangular plans cantilevering above the adjacent street. in addition to the entrance at ground level, the nine-floor building contains six storeys of gallery space. the tower’s sixth and seventh levels house a restaurant and kitchen respectively. once complete, an independent entrance at street level will allow torre to function autonomously. see designboom’s ongoing coverage of fondazione prada here.

fondazione prada torre
two rectangular floor plans cantilever above the adjacent street
image © designboom

fondazione prada torre
meanwhile, two wedge-shaped plans follow the outline of the site
image © designboom

fondazione prada torre
the soaring structure will contain six storeys of gallery space
image © designboom

fondazione prada torre
an independent entrance will allow torre to function autonomously
image © designboom

fondazione prada torre
large amounts of glazing will offer views across the italian city
image © designboom


the tower forms the final piece of the ambitious project
image © designboom

fondazione prada torre
the concrete structure seen from the heart of the existing campus
image © designboom

fondazione prada torre
initial work on the project started almost ten years ago
image © designboom

fondazione prada torre
the tower’s irregular geometry follows a structural logic
image © designboom

fondazione prada torre
the building remains visible from across milan
image © designboom

fondazione prada torre
fondazione prada opened to the public in may 2015
image © designboom

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  • Nice project, but there is a question that is not answered by the article: why did it took so long to build this tower?
    It seems that nothing moved on the construction site in the last 6 or 7 months.
    Financial or technical issues?

    Robin says:

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