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Citylife Tower in Milan: To Be the Tallest Skyscraper in Italy

The Citylife tower designed by Arata Isozaki and Andrea Maffei will by 2015 reach a height of 207 metres, with 50 floors of offices, and become the tallest skyscraper in Italy.

The tower designed by Arata Isozaki and Andrea Maffei as part of the redevelopment programme of the historical trade fair area in Milan commissioned by the company Citylife, is the first, with respect to those by Zaha Hadid and Daniel Libeskind, to start construction at the site. From its newly laid foundations, the skyscraper will reach a height of 207 metres in 2015, and will be the tallest in Italy.

The tower designed by Arata Isozaki and Andrea Maffei, which together with those designed by Zaha Hadid and Daniel Libeskind represents the future Business & Shopping District of CityLife in Milan (a subsidiary company of the Generali Group and in which Allianz has a shareholding), is progressing quickly. The foundation bed, which has just been built, is formed of a continuous block of concrete covering a total of 4,260 cubic metres and required 42 hours of continuous work.

The Construction Site
In the last few weeks 62 underpinning piles over 30 metres long were constructed out of reinforced concrete, and the foundation bed was reinforced with steel bars, with a total weight of around 1,200 tonnes. 630 m2 of formwork and 570 m2 of thermal insulation panels have already been laid. The dimensions of the base of the tower in the plan are 63 x 27 metres, while the sides of the building, which will rest on this base, measure 61.50 x 24 metres. This is the state of the construction site, which has exceptional proportions, both physical and technological. The work programme provides for a series of actions that are closely related to each other: first the structures, then as the floors are gradually freed from the temporary scaffolding, the façades will be assembled.

The Concept
The skyscraper, comprised of a modular system that can in theory repeat indefinitely, has six office floors in each of the eight modules clad with a double-glazed glass skin. The vertical continuation of the modules, slightly convex, has been designed to create the concept of a tower without end. The tower makes reference to the “Endless Tower” built in 1918 by the sculptor Rumeno Constantin Brâncuşi for the Târgu Jiu public garden in Romania. Four slanted “struts” help to support the tower along the two main façades (reducing, among other things, the bulk of the load-bearing structures in the internal space) and act as one of the bracing systems. The side façades are partly glazed and display the structure of the panoramic elevators that lead to the various floors of the building.

The building, moreover, has an underground car park with spaces for 611 cars and 93 motorcycles. The project has already obtained the LEED Gold Pre-certification, meeting the environmental sustainability requirements provided for by the Leed™ international standards. “In our archipelago of forms", explains Andrea Maffei "We found it interesting to develop the idea of a skyscraper without end, a sort of endless tower. We wanted to study a concept to be applied to the skyscraper, even before imagining its aesthetics. In the aspiration for maximum height, we chose to apply the concept of a modular system that could repeat indefinitely and seamlessly.”

Project: TCa CityLife Tower, Milan, Italy
Program: offices
Client: CityLife s.r.l., Milan, Italy
Architects: Arata Isozaki and Andrea Maffei
Design team: Pietro Bertozzi, Takeshi Miura, Alessandra De Stefani, Chiara Zandri, Vincenzo Carapellese, Roberto Balduzzi, Francesca Chezzi, Takatoshi Oki, Stefano Bergagna, Paolo Evolvi, Elisabetta Borgiotti, Adolfo Berardozzi, Sofia Bedinsky, Atsuko Suzuki, Antonietta Bavaro, Carlotta Maranesi, Higaki Seisuke, Hidenari Arai / Andrea Maffei Architects s.r.l., Milan, Italy.
Structural engineering: Maurizio Teora (PD), Luca Buzzoni (PM), Matteo Baffetti / Arup Italia s.r.l., Milan, Italy, Favero & Milan Ingegneria s.p.a., Mirano, Italy
Facades: Mikkel Kragh, Mauricio Cardenas, Matteo Orlandi, Maria Meizoso, Carlos Prada / Arup Italia s.r.l., Milan, Italy
Mechanical systems: Gianfranco Ariatta, Roberto Menghini, Riccardo Lucchese, Andrea Ambrosi, Sylvia Zoppo Vigna / Ariatta Ingegneria dei sistemi s.r.l., Milan, Italy
Fire control: Salvatore Mistretta, Milan, Italy
Vertical infrastructures: Jappsen Ingenieure, Frankfurt, Germany
Lighting design: LPA Light Planners Associates, Tokyo, Japan
Sound engineering: Vernon Cole, Cole Jarman, Addlestone, Surrey, United Kingdom
Project management: J&A, Milan, Italy, Ramboll, London, United Kingdom
Size: built surface for the tower: 81.615 mq
Surface for parking areas (outdoors and underground): 44.485 mq.
Maximum building height: 207 m
Number of floors: 50
Number of office floors: 46
Number of work stations: 3864
Schedule: competition: 2003 (results: 2004) / design: 2005-2011 / start of construction: 2012 / estimated completion: 2015

About Arata Isozaki and Andrea Maffei

The collaboration between Arata Isozaki (Oita, Japan, 1931), the illustrious Japanese master, and Andrea Maffei (Modena, Italy, 1968), began for the first time in 1997, when the Italian architect moved to Tokyo to work alongside the master.

Arata Isozaki graduated from the University of Tokyo in 1954 and studied with Kenzo Tange. In 1963 he founded the Arata Isozaki Atelier, today Arata Isozaki & Associates. Member of the Pritzker Prize jury from 1979 to 1984, Isozaki has received international recognition for his works that have been built all over the world.

Responsible for the Italian projects by Isozaki, Andrea Maffei was project architect for the Palahockey in Torino, built for the winter Olympics in 2006, and for the Olympic pool and the Piazza d’Armi park in Torino, also built in the same year.

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1 Comment

  1. what an interesting design

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