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ACI Headquarters

location: Reggio Emilia (Italy)
client: ACI
status: 2016, 2nd prize competition
consultants:Cavazzoni Associati (electrical), Matteo Verzelloni (landscape)
collaborators: Alessandro Molesini, Benedetta Braglia, Oliviero Brognoli, Alessia Fornasari
program: General restoration and refurbishment of ACI buildings as business center, conference rooms, meeting areas, workshops and training centre


The historical center of Reggio Emilia is going through a phase of great changes but also of problems due to social and urban deterioration in areas close to the center. Among these, the square of the ACI car park as the fulcrum of the area located on the border between the prestigious area linked to the Via Emilia and the potentially strategic and currently degraded areas. These conditions make the ACI parking highly strategic and attractive, together with the recovery of the now obsolete building of the former ACI headquarters and the demolition /reconstruction of the adjacent building. These places are important acotrs for a possible urban regeneration that can bring a profitable, innovative, durable and sustainable business model over time. The building that will be redeveloped has steel structure, beams and pillars, with a floor made of ribbed metal sheets then concrest cast in situ. Realized in the early 1970s, it requires a radical energetic and functional redevelopment, besides being seismic vulnerable. The two adjacent buildings to the west side will be completely demolished on and under the ground and rebuilt with a contiguous basement and in functional communication with the existing one from the former ACI headquarters. The new building will be built next to the latter, using old building demolition debris. A seismic joint will detach the new construction from the existing.

Both buildings will host directional and commercial tertiary activities and activities of public exercises, designed so that the surfaces of the adjoining floors can be enjoyed in direct communication from all future activities that will be installed there. Together with the high value in the redevelopment of the entire area, the project reconfigures the under ground and the open-air parking, both as a number of parking spaces and as ease of use. The underground garage will be object of ordinary and extraordinary maintenance with partial demolitions in the portion adjacent to the current and future basements, to allow both pedestrian and mechanical connection with the square and to assign the existing ramps to exclusively vehicular use. The redevelopment project of the current parking lot includes the landscape design of the edges to mitigate and develop the perception in terms of continuity of public spaces, for example by strengthening the visual connection with the courtyard of the adjacent Palazzo dei Musei; by doing so, a scenographic effect of great variety is possible while maintaining a basic vegetational and formal consistency. The project also aims to define a new public space on the side of the existing ramp, transforming an urban caesura into a regeneration of the historical fabric.