Sumit Singhal loves modern architecture. He comes from a family of builders who have built more than 20 projects in the last ten years near Delhi in India. He has recently started writing about the architectural projects that catch his imagination.
The restoration of the Viale Europa-Via Matteotti area in Arezzo, Italy by Mauro Alpini
July 30th, 2013 by Sumit Singhal
Article source: Mauro Alpini
This building, which partially replaces an existing building, feels rationalist in style. Midway between the suburbs and the historic centre, the building has an ‘L’ shape attached to an existing block which closes off a part of the neighbourhood. Its diverse functions find space on the various floors of the building.
A de-materialisation of the foundation section on the ground floor gives a more in-depth view of the building. This is where the retail section will be located while the upper floors will contain the residential units. In its overall composition, the building dialogues with its context and the countryside around it. A linear facade next to a brise soleil facing, seems to frame and look out 360 degrees onto the landscape around it.
A Gardelli style feature, it seems to pervade the building not only for the dual fronted approach which emerges but above all for the use, at least in the lower building, of a combination of elements which hint at a tribute to the anti-tuberculosis institute, the lesson of the town once again via the hints at stratification which we perceive in the perspective from the two facades. A series of traditional windows in the sense of proportions – set out a dimensionally closed prospect whose approach to the town echoes the historic centre.
The heads of the rear buildings are veritable paintings with internal balconies which are closed within the blocks. The balconies are turned into hanging gardens, a cascade of green which emulates and echoes the dialogue with the hills around it. If you think of Subbiano and this work, what comes to mind is the travellers of the Grand Tour who, discovering the Casentino, determined the contours of the interpretation of the town of Arezzo.
Into this area between the main Apennine chain and the huge isolated block of Pratomagno, the Casentino valley stretches and winds itself into the Arezzo plain as far as the tempestuous peaks of the Verna, where St Francis received the signs of the stigmata, to the very highest mountains. It is an area of almost English cool which maintains its green even in full summer because of the innumerable torrents and streams which flow into the upper courses of the Arno and from which Adam from Brescia hell dreamt of drinking.
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