The recipe for a good architectural project, as well as that of a good kitchen dish, must know how to combine its components in a holistic way, obtaining as a result a product in which spaces, functions, technologies, and materials create a unique and special place, capable to guarantee its users an indelible experience.
Project: Riolo Culinary School
Studio Name: LFSN
Design Team: Livio Ficarra, Silvia Nardi
Location: Riolo Terme (RA), Italy
Collaborators: Luca Spilla, Salvatore Toscano, Francesco Scuderi, Ottaviano Emma
Photography Credits: n.a.
Other Credits: Operation Consultant, Barbarino la Licata.
The branch of the “Pellegrino Artusi” Professional Institute for Hotel and Catering Services is designed as a dynamic and permeable building capable of being both a meeting and aggregation point and a permanent laboratory where students can increase their knowledge.
The competition project is drawn up according to the principles of bio-ecological architecture, i.e. using passive solar and ventilation systems, exploiting the shape factor, the orientation of the building, using materials with low environmental impact and optimizing resources with the aim of creating a NZEB (“Near Zero Energy Building”), that is a building with almost zero energy consumption.
The recipe for a good architectural project, as well as that of a good cooking dish, must know how to combine its components in a holistic way, obtaining as a result a product in which spaces, functions, technologies, and materials create a unique and special place, capable of guaranteeing its users an unforgettable experience.
The project for the branch of the “P. Artusi” Professional Institute for Hotel and Catering Services aims to adequately respond both to practical and social needs, becoming a spokesperson for the shared values of a community, able to dialogue with it and be an expression of the importance of common good. A building conceived as a living organism, capable of adapting to changing conditions of the context, as the needs of its users vary and respond to theirs demands through high characteristics of synchronic and diachronic flexibility achieving, for every possible configuration, high levels of environmental quality, saving energy and natural resources.
A dynamic and permeable building capable of being both a “meeting point and aggregation point where the rite of urbanity is celebrated”, and permanent laboratory where students can cultivate their aspirations and increase their technical and cultural knowledge.
The designed building starts from a parallelepiped, positioned on the project site in such a way to maximize exposure and optimize volumes, which empties to open up to the city, to connect with the garden and to create a protected courtyard in keeping with the pre-existing school building and the gym, an open space to break away from school activities and informally interact with other people.
The skin of the building, made with a latest generation plastic film (with over 50% of recycled material and with very advantageous characteristics regarding LCA) is meant to protect the casing and, at the same time, is an eye-catcher, thanks to the graphics that introduce to the functions of the building. When empty spaces and openings interrupt the continuity of the external envelope, as it happens when a ripe fruit is cut, the building shows its wooden soul creating at the same time a singular chromatic contrast increasing the formal and sensorial quality of the envelope.
The atrium (everyone’s city): is the core of the project, a filter between the city and the school, from which all the functions of the building unfold. The tourist reception laboratory was conceived as the reception of a large hotel overlooking the triple height of the atrium; Behind the front desk a large window overlooks one of the two kitchens, immediately revealing it to visitors, a second window overlooks the pastry shop. A large wall is dedicated to the recipe archive, a thematic library available to students and building visitors.
Also, from the atrium you can access the rooms, the classrooms located on the upper floors, the internal courtyard, and the bar area which, being in a central position, will be functional to all potential uses of the building.
The ground floor was conceived to be independent from the rest of the structure for activities to be carried out in the extra-curricular hours.
The outdoor spaces have been divided into two distinct areas, the herb garden (internal garden) and the urban vegetable garden (external garden); the first of these is a private and protected space, which develops around the courtyard created by the dialogue between the existing building and the new building. The urban garden, on the other hand, opens onto the city and is a free space that can be used by everyone. The peculiarity of the two gardens is that they are cultivated exclusively with edible plant species.
The connection with the pre-existing building takes place via a glazed and air-conditioned path on the eastern front of the hotel, minimizing the impact of the intervention to be carried out which in fact will simply consist in the creation of an opening and a partition.
Within this path, small flower beds will allow you to cultivate aromatic plants even during cold periods, making this space a sort of winter garden.
The design of an eco-sustainable building complex requires an in-depth knowledge of the urban context and of the components that contribute to determine the environmental system. The study of the climatic components, sunshine, ventilation, humidity, precipitation, as well as the analysis of the geomorphological, orographic, hydrological conditions and of the vegetation present are therefore a prerequisite for a correct setting of a project that respects the reference context and that has a minimum consumption of energy from non-renewable sources.
The site is spread over an area at about 98 m a.s.l., in the climatic zone E. The climate is sub-continental. Annual rainfall is variable, peaking in November. January is the coldest month with an average minimum temperature of 2.9 °C, the warmest month of the year is July with an average temperature of 23.4 °C.
The building is designed according to the principles of bio-ecological architecture, i.e., using passive solar and ventilation systems, exploiting the shape factor, the orientation of the building in relation to the sun, using materials with low environmental impact and evaluated throughout their entire cycle of life, all tools to contain energy consumption and minimize the negative effects that its construction can cause when building and later during its management and maintenance.
The saving of resources must also be extended to water, with systems integrated into the building for the collection and recovery of rainwater and gray water. The goal is to create an NZEB (“Near Zero Energy Building”), that is a building with almost zero energy consumption and designed following cutting-edge construction criteria.