Five Pills of Beauty: the strength of a community that is represented by architecture

31 May 2019

4 min

Press Release

Five Pills of Beauty:  the strength of a community that is represented by architecture

Inauguration today of the “Nuovo Picchio” Social and Health Centre for disabled people in San Felice sul Panaro (Modena) Italy, the last of the five projects born from the Workshop Ricostruzione.

Bologna, 1st June 2019 – A few days after the 7th anniversary of May 29th, 2012, when an earthquake of magnitude 5.8 made Emilia Romagna tremble, the last “Pill of Beauty” of the Workshop Ricostruzione was presented.

Today in San Felice sul Panaro, Modena (Italy), the “Nuovo Picchio” Social and Health Centre for disabled people was inaugurated. It was created thanks to the generosity of the workers and companies who accepted the invitation of the “Nuova Polis” trust (Confindustria, CGIL, CISL, UIL and Confservizi) to contribute to the rebirth of the areas hit by the earthquake. The Fund includes voluntary contributions from workers and companies throughout the country, for a total of about 7,700,000 euros.

The “Nuova Polis” Trust has donated new spaces for social gathering, especially for young people, of great architectural, technological, sustainable and functional quality, built with innovative techniques and materials. The coordination of the laboratory for the design and implementation of the interventions has been entrusted to the guidance of the architect Mario Cucinella and his studio Mario Cucinella Architects.

«The ambition of this initiative promoted by the trust “Nuova Polis,” was to give shape through architecture to the new needs of aggregation, meeting, reference, now even more necessary in a place so dramatically wounded», said the architect Mario Cucinella, who has always argued that it was essential to make these projects a point of reference for citizens. For this reason, people were involved in a participatory process and six young architects and engineers under the age of 30, expression of these territories, worked side by side with the team of Mario Cucinella Architects.

The “Nuovo Picchio” is a facility that will accommodate up to 22 guests with severe disabilities and serve the community of nine municipalities in the northern part of the Modena province. A barrier-free space designed around the archetype of the barn with large windows that ensure visual continuity between the interiors and exteriors. The outdoor green areas are designed in accordance with the principles of the healing garden, which promote and improve the guests’ health and wellbeing through particular plants and paved pathways, transforming the garden into a therapeutic space.

The other works created over the years are: the House of music in Pieve di Cento (Bologna) the Recreation Center “Hub Oltrepò Mantovano” in Quistello (Mantova), the Sport and Culture Centre in Bondeno (Ferrara) and the Dance School in Reggiolo (Reggio Emilia).

«The great experience gained over the years on reconstruction ends whit the inauguraztion of this last project». – said the architect Mario Cucinella, coordinator of the Reconstruction Workshop – «Once again the example of the reconstruction of Emilia Romagna has shown how it is possible to rebuild better than before and, with attention to the needs of the communities. The “Nuovo Picchio” Social and Health Centre will be a place of great and new happiness, both for the guests and for the families who have to face difficulties with extraordinary courage. Architecture has been the starting point of this collective journey and has shown itself to be a powerful and, above all, useful tool. We started at the first press conference a few years ago, talking about  “pills of beauty”. Today that beauty is all in the happiness of these communities: Pieve di Cento, Quistello, Bondeno, Reggiolo and San Felice sul Panaro. Thanks also go to the six young architects who have collaborated in this project, Arianna Balboni, Mirco Bianchini, Francesco Galli, Valentino Gareri, Federico La Piccirella and Clelia Zappalà who, coordinate by architect Marco Dell’Agli, have also had a great opportunity to grow professionally and who will be spokesmen for a “contagious beauty».

The ceremony was attended by the President of Confindustria Emilia-Romagna Pietro Ferrari, the Secretary General of UIL Emilia-Romagna Giuliano Zignani representing CGIL CISL UIL Emilia-Romagna, the President of the Emilia-Romagna Region and Commissioner for Reconstruction Stefano Bonaccini, the Guarantor of the Trust Nuova Polis Onlus Piero Gnudi, the architect Mario Cucinella and the former President of ASP Municipalities of Modena Area Nord Paolo Negro

The works were concluded by the Vice President of Confindustria Stefan Pan and the Confederal Secretary CGIL Tania Scacchetti representing CGIL CISL UIL national. 

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