The dynamic landscape of Italy requires inventive works of architecture. From ancient aqueducts to modern museums, Italian engineers have never had it easy. Recently, OFF Architecture proposed a new way for Italy to take advantage of these engineering marvels by turning expansive bridges into highrise communities. The Vertical Villages of Calabria, Italy are a series of proposed structures that retrofit existing bridges with homes and public spaces with magnificent views of the Mediterranean coast. A design like this would preserve the original structure, add new real estate while conserving precious Italian space, and show once again how magnificent Italian engineering can be. – See more at: www.thecoolist.com
French architecture companies OFF Architecture, PR Architect and Samuel Nageotte have been awarded the Solar Park South International design prize for their vertical village concept.
The brief was to use the Salerno-Reggio Calabria highway as inspiration, and the architects settled on the viaducts carrying the road as a springboard for their design. They wanted to turn them into health, leisure and residential centres for the local population. The upper viaducts become pathways for walks and views, tunnels just below the top contain roads connecting to nearby towns.
The structure is built from sustainable local materials, using the existing bridge as a structure and the inhabitants will have a view of the Tyrrhenian Sea. Nearby Mt Etna supplies geothermal energy, and the climate is favourable enough that the structure won’t need much in the way of weatherproofing.