STEPS (Sustainability. Technology. Environment. People. Society) was our submission for the Young Architects Competition of a Green Academy in Bologna, Italy. The project was designed with three principles.
EAT ME! The new walkable and edible addition to the old factory is designed to grow and harvest local produce for both the residents and the restaurants as a self sustaining ecosystem. Every balcony will contain a mini farm, whilst all the public gardens will contain edible plants such as basil, tomatoes and other local produce. The green walls will be a taxonomy of every species in the region with the intention to record, preserve and maintain.
REMEMBER: Overtime, the vegetation on the south wall start to absorb the old structure and be an important reminder that nature must take priority over the unnatural man made world. If we interfere with nature we are ultimately interfering with the destiny of the human race. Another great threat to the human race is violence and intolerance. Eight internal courtyards and gardens act as a memory for the 800 tragic victims that were killed in Bologna during the second world war. These tranquil nodes are peaceful installations created with the intention of bringing people together.
COLLIDE: Through carefully designed spaces such as the internal memorial gardens, a walkable roofs, the shared cafe and extensive public spaces, STEPS is designed to promote collisions between the diverse users of the space for the purpose of fostering interaction, collaboration, building networks and relationships which will ultimately lead to innovation. All the spaces in the building will be shared by all users. For example business people may use a room to have a meeting whilst the schools may book the room for a class or studio session. An eco start-up team might be working in the library next to a student working on his bio physics exam. By creating opportunities for collaboration between a variety of disciplines, experiences and backgrounds, STEPS will foster a culture of collaboration, mentorship and innovation working towards a better future.