Renzo Piano Building Workshop’s project for the new Intesa Sanpaolo head office is both an environmental and social laboratory and an urban project, with a discreet urbanity that unites it with the city’s inhabitants.
The adjoining garden, Giardino Nicola Grosa, has been upgraded and transformed into a playful space, with trees of different heights, lawns and neighborhood functions. Access to the garden from Corso Inghilterra is provided by a public gallery that traverses the entrance hall on the ground floor.
The tower, 166 meters high is divided by infrastructure into 3 levels of parking garages, one of utility rooms and a low garden around which are laid out the company restaurant and kindergarten, while above ground it consists of 26 floors of offices and a floor for training which includes spaces and services open to the public.
Two volumes in particular reveal the tower’s public vocation. The lower is the multi-purpose, flexible conference room. It can be transformed into an exhibition hall, with concerts or performances as required thanks to movable loft and variable acoustics. It can accommodate 364 people. Higher up, the bioclimatic greenhouse, naturally ventilated, welcomes the public on three levels: the restaurant with the garden, the exhibition hall and the roof terrace.
To the east and west the building’s spine consists of elevators and stairs, contributing to the vital and varied effect of the design. To the south the staircase connecting the floors incorporates a vertical winter garden where creepers filter the light behind motorized facades.
The building is the result of advanced research intended to take advantage of the surrounding natural sources of energy (water, air, sunlight) and limit overall consumption. Ground water is used for cooling the offices. Solar energy is captured by the photovoltaic panels covering the tower’s whole south facade. The ceiling height of the offices is 3.20 meters and they have optimized indirect lighting. Particular attention has been paid to the working conditions of employees in terms of quality of space, lighting and thermal comfort.
The double-skin glass facade, developed by Permasteelisa Group, makes it possible to limit heat loss in winter and is controlled in relation to the heat input through a system of apertures and solar screens with motorized louvers, which control irradiation and lighting in the work areas. In summer, the cool night air is channeled inside through the double concrete floor slabs, absorbing its coolness and giving it out in the offices by day with the help of radiant panels.
The whole is controlled by probes linked to a technologically advanced BMS (Building Management System).
Like the snow-capped mountains that form the backdrop to the city of Turin, the tower is covered with bright white materials (glass, lacquered aluminum, opalescent glass) that make it almost immaterial and “luminescent,” like ice, forming subtle photosensitive variations and facets that change depending on the time of day and season.
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Intesa San Paolo Office Building, Turin, Italy
Architects: Renzo Piano Building Workshop
Design team: P. Vincent e A.H. Temenides (partner and associate in charge), C. Pilara, V. Serafini, with A. Alborghetti, M. Arlunno, J. Carter, C. Devizzi, V. Delfaud, G. Marot, J. Pattinson, D. Phillips, L. Raimondi, D. Rat, M. Sirvin and M. Milanese, A. Olivier, J.Vargas; S.Moreau (environmental aspects); O. Aubert, C. Colson, Y. Kyrkos, A. Pacé (models)
Consulting architects: Inarco
Structures: Expedition Engineering / Studio Ossola / M.Majowiecki
Building services: Manens-Tifs
Facade engineering: RFR
Facades: Permasteelisa Group
Environmental studies: Eléments Ingénieries / CSTB / RWDI
Hydrogeological consultant: Golder Associates
Fire prevention: GAE Engineering
Acoustic: Peutz & Associés / Onleco
Vertical transportation: Lerch, Bates & Associates
Audio-video equipment: Labeyrie & Associés
Kitchen equipment: Spooms / Barberis
Landscape: Atelier Corajoud / Studio Giorgetta
Cost consultant: Tekne
Interior design: Michele De Lucchi / Pierluigi Copat Architecture
Site supervision: Jacobs Italia