so + so studio have developed ‘YAC university island’ – a higher education facility positioned above the historical island of poveglia. the architecture project looks at ways to restore and make use of the existing octagonal geometry, by considering a number of factors including location, traditional heritage and the environmental possibilities contained within the land. the overall aim was to acknowledge and respect the rich and tragic layers of history that are buried in the development, whilst providing a new progressive vision for the peninsula.

so and so studio YAC university island poveglia designboom
canal access




poveglia is located between venice and lido in the venetian lagoon in northern italy. the island is divided into two parts. so + so studio excavated this former trail, creating a unique canal system that allows accessibility to the existing venetian waterways. the campus floats above the land, dispensing a vaporous cloud of mist that feeds the eco-friendly laboratories below and revitalizes the abandoned farmland of the 1960’s.   

so and so studio YAC university island poveglia designboom
island courtyards




the physical structure houses labs, classrooms, a grand library, performance spaces and outside green areas. crops harvested on the fields are used in both the student and public cafeterias, which establishes an independent, self-sufficient network.

so and so studio YAC university island poveglia designboom
first floor plan 

so and so studio YAC university island poveglia designboom
existing site plan 

so and so studio YAC university island poveglia designboom
new site plan

 so and so studio YAC university island poveglia designboom
site diagrams

so and so studio YAC university island poveglia designboom
program diagrams




designboom has received this project from our ‘DIY submissions‘ feature, where we welcome our readers to submit their own work for publication. see more project submissions from our readers here.


edited by: hollie smith | designboom

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