Negozio Blu: centro enogastronomico Eataly, Torino

A food and wine centre breathes new life into the old Carpano vermouth factory in Turin. Text Negozio Blu Architetti Associati. Photo Filippo Gallino

The scheme for the conversion of the Carpano vermouth factory gives the city a new collective space while displaying a major piece of industrial architecture that dates back to the beginning of the twentieth century. The brief was to create a centre dedicated to food and wine, enabling the symbolic connotations of the building to be incorporated, its association with a well-known vermouth and recollection of the city’s food industry traditions.

The design exploits the unexpected internal spatial articulation, developed over the course of the 1900s around a number of courtyards that on a conceptual level contrast with the monolithic Lingotto that sits opposite. The Eataly Centre is a multi-functional complex on a number of storeys, articulated in nine restaurant areas along with sales areas organised by product type (salumi and cheeses, meat, fruit and vegetables, fish, pasta and pizza, wine, beer), exhibition spaces, rooms for teaching cookery, library, conference hall, offices and the Carpano Museum. The old boundary wall of the Lingotto, treated with a brick-red colour like the existing buildings, becomes the “urban threshold” that provides access to the hall with the high tanks for mixing the vermouth. The circulation layout brings together specialised functions (shopping, restaurants, public services) in an integrated series of covered streets and piazzas that constitute a “citadel of gastronomy”. The internal courtyards, protected with a new glazed roof and bringing in natural light, constitute the main area for orientation and circulation. The new structure, with bolted red metal beams and columns, contrasts with the texture of the facades and characterises the most important public areas - such as the central gallery and external glazed elements (conference hall and museum) – using a device that recalls the technology used in early industrial architecture.

Conversion of the ex Carpano plant. Eataly food and wine centre, Torino
Architects: Negozio Blu Architetti Associati (Gustavo Ambrosini, Cristiana Catino, Paola Gatti, Carlo Grometto, Mauro Penna)
Area: 11.400 mq
Completion: 2007

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