Type: commission
Client: Private
Size: 6.000 mq sb / 10.000 mq terrain
Location: Empoli, Italy
Status: in progress
Team: Umberto Albricci, Elisa Viviani, Alessandro Bucelli

The project is positioned in one of the most interesting areas of the city of Empoli, a city with 50,000 inhabitants and far about 20 km from Florence; In fact, the area of ​​our interest is among different historical and landscape emergencies, at east the Pontorme, the oldest part of the city founded in the early Middle Age, at north the Empoli football sports complex and at west the bed of stream Orme beyond which begins the twentieth-century city.

From these first news it is already clear that is an area that has the chance to become  a real connection between the historic city and that of the ‘900, in addition to improve the usability of a beautiful tract of the river  park.

The surface to realize on a 10,000 sqm lot is about 7,000 square meters, distributed on buildings with a height of no more three floors; the role of transition between the Pontorme medieval quarter and the contemporary strucures, there has to be  both in the individual buildings and in the urban distribution of the various elements of the project.

Starting point, inspiration and geometric matrix was the chimney stack belonging to the ex – matchstick factory, suggesting a natural access point to the new residential complex, which results in a square that turn around it and assigns the accesses to three of the six buildings that compose the intervention.

The type of buildings is the classic in line even if the volumes become complicated progressively from the ground floor occupied by larger apartments with garden and it goes up to the next 2nd/3rd flloor; here the volumes, full of “subtractions” become large terraces or real outdoor rooms, are composed to highlight each house as compared to an other one.

This principle has been adopted as fundamental on which base the philosophy of intervention; usually the in line buildings tend to anonymise the house making uniform the facade and making them homogeneous and at the same time, taking off to each dwelling  the “right” to appear as an unicum, as a place where there is a kind of life totally different from the house next door.

The buildings are entirely  wooden, following the principles of X LAM technology, working on sleeve depth  of 7.80 meters, that it can organise the horizontal structures using a single panel without intermediate supports. This makes spaces flexible and on “ a human scale”, as well as potentially always ventilated.

In addition, the wooden structures, thanks to a foundation system made with seismic devices, offers an exceptional resistance to telluric phenomenons that increasingly affect the central Italy.