cavallerizze-museo-della-scienza-stables-milan-science-museum-studio-ARCHIT-luca-cipelletti-designboom-01
luca cipelletti renovates the historic stables at milan’s national science museum
all images © henrik blomqvist

 

 

 

italian architect luca cipelletti has completed the renovation and conversion of a series of former stables on the site of milan’s national science museum — the museo nazionale della scienza. the large complex is centered around a 16th century monastery that was later transformed into an austrian military barracks. after the entire site suffered severe bombing during world war II, architects piero portaluppi, enrico agostino griffini, and ferdinando reggiori renovated the monastery, and it opened to the public in 1953 as the ‘museo della scienza’. however, the adjacent stables remained in a state of disrepair, until now.

cavallerizze-museo-della-scienza-stables-milan-science-museum-studio-ARCHIT-luca-cipelletti-designboom-02
existing façades have been restored or replaced

 

 

 

the project is arranged around a linear circulation route, made by cutting a section through the building’s original walls. this path connects each of the stables, providing access to the new exhibition spaces. each of these volumes features exposed brickwork, restored and secured for everyday use. the scheme is organized axially in relation to the monastery, and relates to its cruciform shape where the two spines of the building meet. a new entrance point has also been added, making it easier to access the museum from public transport.

cavallerizze-museo-della-scienza-stables-milan-science-museum-studio-ARCHIT-luca-cipelletti-designboom-03
a composite of polymer and bamboo has been used for certain elevations

 

 

 

a scored cement interior wall provides a neutral and industrial backdrop, while technical and mechanical elements have been carefully integrated within the design. a single planar element, consisting of an extended truss lined with a steel mesh, traverses the stables, providing space for a number of services including air conditioning, electrical systems, and lighting elements. regarding the preservation of the historic building, the architect’s primary objective was to highlight the elements of the original structure that needed to be preserved, such as the large arched windows and the roof system made up of wooden trusses.

cavallerizze-museo-della-scienza-stables-milan-science-museum-studio-ARCHIT-luca-cipelletti-designboom-04
the internal layout is arranged around a linear circulation route

 

 

 

in the central area, a large multi-functional space has been planned, while the volumetric ordering of the stables has been rebuilt — filling the gap with two contiguous rooms. to enclose the missing façades, a metal structure equipped with a bamboo skin was added: the panels, manufactured by extrusion and easily replaceable, are assembled from a composite of polymer and bamboo — an eco-friendly solution with performance characteristics that make it particularly suitable for outdoor use. a new roof canopy is equipped with a self-supporting metal sheet that has been fully insulated and sound-proofed.

cavallerizze-museo-della-scienza-stables-milan-science-museum-studio-ARCHIT-luca-cipelletti-designboom-05
a path connects each of the stables, providing access to the new exhibition spaces

cavallerizze-museo-della-scienza-stables-milan-science-museum-studio-ARCHIT-luca-cipelletti-designboom-06
exposed brickwork has been restored and secured for everyday use

cavallerizze-museo-della-scienza-stables-milan-science-museum-studio-ARCHIT-luca-cipelletti-designboom-07
the architect’s primary objective was to highlight elements of the original structure

cavallerizze-museo-della-scienza-stables-milan-science-museum-studio-ARCHIT-luca-cipelletti-designboom-08
a scored cement interior wall provides a neutral and industrial backdrop

cavallerizze-museo-della-scienza-stables-milan-science-museum-studio-ARCHIT-luca-cipelletti-designboom-09
light enters through the bamboo screen façade

cavallerizze-museo-della-scienza-stables-milan-science-museum-studio-ARCHIT-luca-cipelletti-designboom-10
a new roof canopy has been fully insulated and sound-proofed

cavallerizze-museo-della-scienza-stables-milan-science-museum-studio-ARCHIT-luca-cipelletti-designboom-11
the institution first opened to the public in 1953