The intervention involves two minimum intervention units located inside the historic centre of Novi di Modena, near the main square. The buildings housed residences, commercial and tertiary businesses, as well as the town civic tower. This tower was affected by a significant collapse due to seismic events and the other parts of the buildings suffered significant damage, too. The project aims at restructuring and seismically improving the two affected buildings, as well as reconstructing the civic tower. How the reconstruction of this portion will be performed is still being discussed by the Municipality and the competent Superintendency for Architectural and Environmental Heritage. The project integrates as far as possible the guidelines of the Reconstruction Plan drawn up by the Municipality of Novi after the earthquake, and is based on accurate archival and historical research.

The main damages detected are: collapses of large portions of the lower body of the tower, whose highest part was then entirely demolished for public safety reasons; collapse of the wooden cover of the lower body; widespread cracks, even passing ones, on the bearing masonry walls of each floor; floor cracks due to the sliding of the floor orientation; activation of reverse mechanisms of the front with out-of-plane deflection of the elevations; damages to interiors and floor coverings.

In this configuration, the Tower is imagined with a reinforced concrete earthquake-resistant structure and a fair-faced brickwork covering for the base part that stands out from the base body covering; moreover, the old tower element will be partially covered with "Corten" steel plates. Hence the introduction of a new material; despite our attempt to recover the "original" style of the complex (which is now completely lost due to the collapse), the new material will be able to revive its historical-cultural value, by preserving what it deserves to be preserved and handed down to posterity, which is to say "the existence" of the building itself. The progression of the old brick coping is repeated, but it is made of "Corten" steel and the classic four-pitch roofing is made of copper sheets. The clock with a round dial is on all four sides of the tower. For this project, the development of other formal and material solutions is currently being studied by the competent bodies.

In the main building we are planning to preserve the perimeter walls by reconstructing the internal vertical bearing masonry, as well as the horizontal ones. The new floors will be made with main and secondary wooden frames and will be completed with wooden planks (lime-coloured and painted).  The roof will be made with wooden structure and planks, with an overlying insulating material and a roofing layer made of tiles partially recovered from demolition. All the external windows/doors will have a high thermal performance and will be made of varnished wood, both as far as the door blinds and the glazed frames of windows and doors; as far as the windows placed on the ground floor, they will be also equipped with safety elements in painted steel (gratings) with a traditional design quite similar to the existing one. From a functional point of view, the project involves the construction of different housing units with related pertaining areas, therefore optimizing the spaces and adapting them to the requirements. 

Project Synthesis

Year: 2017

Place: Novi di Modena (MO)

Customer: Comune di Novi di Modena (MO) ed impresa di costruzioni