paolo venturella drafts green facade for italian pavilion at expo 2015
paolo venturella‘s proposal for the ‘italian pavilion’ at expo 2015 in milan is based on the integration between sustainable food and renewable energies. food is incorporated into the design as evidenced by an enveloping green wall that wraps around the exterior space, while natural energies (solar, water and geothermal) are integrated into the façade. the architect’s scheme envisions the hortus seamlessly moving from the exterior to the interior of the structure in order to create a greenhouse where people can easily produce sustenance, thus making this the key feature that characterizes the volume from all perspectives.
drawing on the site’s solar exposition, a large greenhouse (that requires direct illumination) is placed on the south side of the lot, while a covered space for events and expositions (that requires indirect illumination) is situated on the north side looking onto the lake. the pavilion is organized through a series of shifting volumes that create terraces facing southwards. they encompass the gallery areas, even if serving the whole building, and are used for the cultivation of fruits and vegetables — showing how it is possible to incorporate the production of food in the building. these patios are envisioned as a set of large urban steps with a green wall system that works as a natural filter for ventilation and illumination, with each structure maintaining its own function: exhibition spaces, offices and events areas are placed at different levels as requested, and they find their common point in the greenhouse.
west facing façade
the greenhouse guarantees a control of the indoor climate throughout the year. the blooming partitions serving a purpose throughout all seasons. in the winter, when the plants have no leaves, heat is released in the interior. in the summer, when plants have more leaves, the heat is stopped outside in order that the inside of the pavilion be kept cool and fresh. the other characteristic element is the external louver system. since the pavilion requires zones with direct light and others with indirect light, the shading network fades from south to north according to the programs. this architecture detail is made by photovoltaic panels so to guarantee a perfect integration with renewable energies that distinguish the building. they are tilted towards different angles according to each side, so to optimize the solar radiation during all times of the day.
profile of the stepped terraces
view from the lake
paolo venturella’s ‘italian pavilion’ personifies the icon of nature in architecture. it symbolizes the symbiosis between sustainable food and sustainable energies making it a working architectural example of sustainability.
diagram indicating the arrangement of greenhouse and terrace spaces
diagram indicating the distribution of photovoltaic, water and geothermal programs
architect: paolo venturella
team design: VIA ingegneria, interpro srl, angelo balducci, manuel tonati
location: milan, italy
client: EXPO 2015