Porta Romana railway yard: the team led by OUTCOMIST, Diller Scofidio + Renfro, PLP Architecture and Carlo Ratti associati wins the tender for the preliminary urban regeneration masterplan with the Parco Romana project



Respected all deadlines for the publication and assignment of the Call
• Project aligned with the protocols of the Paris Agreement, the European Green Deal and the National Recovery and Resilience Plan defined at the level of the United Nations SDG
• The Public Consultation will start today and will end on 30 April 2021
• The promoters will present the definitive Masterplan by May, immediately starting the working table with the designers

Milan, March 31, 2021 - The "Porta Romana" real estate investment fund - promoted and managed by COIMA SGR and subscribed by Covivio, Prada Holding and the COIMA ESG City Impact fund - in agreement with the FS Italiane Group and as auctioneer of the international competition for the preparation of the preliminary Masterplan for the regeneration of the Porta Romana Railway Yard, prepared according to the guidelines of the Municipality of Milan, announces the winner:
the Parco Romana project presented by the OUTCOMIST team, Diller Scofidio + Renfro, PLP Architecture, Carlo Ratti Associati, with Gross. Max, Nigel Dunnett Studio, Arup, Portland Design, Systematica, Studio Zoppini, Aecom, Land, Artelia.

Motivation: The project makes a large green space the generating center of gravity of the development, reversing traditional urban concepts. Mindful of connecting to the city, located to the north and south of the development, the project creates a very clear urban plan, in terms of strategy, form and functions and hypothesizes the reuse of some buildings, in memory of the industrial history of the area. The green line, which connects east to west, is a stimulus for further mitigation of the railway.

Chosen among the six finalist teams led by BIG - Bjarke Ingels Group; Cobe A / S; John McAslan + Partners; OUTCOMIST, Diller Scofidio + Renfro, PLP Architecture, Carlo Ratti Associati; Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (Europe) LLP - SOM; Studio Paola Viganò, the winning project was presented today during a press conference attended by the Mayor of Milan Giuseppe Sala, the Councilor for Infrastructure, Transport and Sustainable Mobility of the Lombardy Region Claudia Maria Terzi, the CEO of Fondazione Milano - Cortina 2026 Vincenzo Novari, the Councilor for Urban Planning of the Municipality of Milan Pierfrancesco Maran, the CEO of FS Sistemi Urbani Umberto Lebruto, the CEO & Founder of COIMA Manfredi Catella, the CEO of Italy of Covivio Alexei Dal Pastro, the Director Delegate of Prada Holding Carlo Mazzi, the member of the judging commission Laura Montedoro, the president of the judging commission Gregg Jones and the design team that won the tender, coordinated by the Single Officer of the Competition Leopoldo Freyrie.

The work of the jury (Gregg Jones, Design Principal, Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects; Manfredi Catella; Simona Collarini, Director of the General Urban Planning Area of the Municipality of Milan; Alexei Dal Pastro; Carlo Mazzi; Bruno Finzi, President of the Order of Engineers of the Province of Milan; Laura Montedoro, Associate Professor at the Department of Architecture and Urban Studies of the Politecnico di Milano. Sole Responsible of the Competition Arch. Leopoldo Freyrie) took place during two sessions on 29 and 30 March with extensive discussions given the excellent quality of all the projects presented.

The project
Parco Romana proposes a new model of integration between nature and city. On the one hand, the project regenerates a railway axis, on the other, the development brings together residents, athletes and visitors in a community with its own identity, through the public transport network, to the surrounding area. Residences and workspaces live in symbiosis with the natural landscape and outdoor activities; the integrated planning of the neighborhood encourages pedestrian travel, creating a car free area for gentle mobility. The mix of public spaces and accessible paths hosts essential services and proximity trade as integral and living parts of the project.

Parco Romana is the natural heart of the development, a lawn without architectural barriers that naturalizes the former industrial site within the surrounding urban fabric, creating a new public asset which is rich in biodiversity. An east-west connection inspires further railway mitigation interventions, including a potential Milanese highline above the track beam to recreate permeability. This has the ambitious goal of allowing residents and visitors to cross the entire length of the Yard, transforming the most obstructive feature of the former industrial area into a connector between public and private spaces.

Urban blocks trace the edges of the surrounding streets; their tree-lined perimeters, the ground floors with neighborhood services and retail activities for the communities, extend into the areas to the north and south of the site, creating center of attraction also for the adjacent neighborhoods; at the center of the residential architecture, courtyards that recall the Milanese tradition, create semi-public areas within which to socialize, work and relax. The new Lodi District is characterized by a multi-level public square that acts as a bridge on the active tracks to connect the large park Piazza Lodi, the Circle Line Station and the office buildings planned in the eastern sector of the Yard.

At the opposite extreme, in the south-west quadrant, the project is dedicated to Milan’s 2026 olympic event. The spaces for the Athletes Village are as simple and regular as possible, to allow maximum flexibility and their conversion into a residential component will remind people of its legacy at the end of the competition. The decision to place the Olympic village in this quadrant, shared by all the finalists of the competition, is determined by its temporary function and by the future residential destination that will allow to maintain a general balance of the neighborhood.

An integrated system connects the pre-existing residential district in the north with the cultural, technological and agricultural districts in the south. Parco Romana integrates a planning approach based on time planning and a continuous evaluation of the life cycle. An infrastructure based on data and parametric tools optimizes the distribution of land use and resources, also designing new forms of user involvement and supporting economic sustainability. The masterplan's Digital Twin (a digital model of physical development) optimizes economic, social, cultural and environmental factors throughout the project life cycle.

The sustainability system of the masterplan defines and measures environmental and ecological objectives with performance indicators (KPIs) that guide the design and construction process.
In addition to meeting and integrating every requirement of the Program Agreement for the Porta Romana Railway Yard, the Environment and Ecology objectives align with the protocols of the Paris Agreement, the European Green Deal and the National Recovery and Resilience Plan defined at the SDG level of the United Nations.

The development of the Yard focuses on:
• decarbonisation consistent with local climatic conditions;
• creation of a resilient community that promotes the health and well-being of citizens;
• circular approach that brings value in the short and long term;
• support for biodiversity, enhancement of natural capital, forestry and urban agriculture solutions.

The Masterplan designated today as the winner, is an orientation and non-binding document, as required by the Program Agreement. The designers will immediately start the development of the final version that the promoters have committed to presenting to the institutions by May 2021 with a tight-knit path for compliance with the limited timeframes resulting from the deadlines for the construction of the Olympic Village. In order to coherently integrate the Masterplan, among the components undergoing parallel and accelerated development, the promoters have started the in-depth analysis for the definition of the program and the design scheme of the Olympic Village.

The development of the Masterplan will take into account the information received from the jury, the promoters, and the observations and requests of the city collected with the Public Consultation phase, a substantial fulfillment required by the Program Agreement on Railway Stations in Milan, which is launched today.

From today, it will be possible to view the preliminary Masterplan in detail, as well as the calendar of appointments in the participatory course, on the website www.scaloportaromana.com. Among the main events: the Scalo di Porta Romana Day, a double public meeting open to the city scheduled for Tuesday 6 April 2021 at 6pm and 9pm CET; the questionnaire on the Masterplan, online from 7 April; two council commissions in Municipalities 4 and 5; a dedicated email address to which you can send free contributions.

Although the award of the area was concluded approximately 12 months after the original scheduled date due to COVID-19, the promoters respected the deadlines both for the publication and for the assignment of the tender for the preparation of the Masterplan to regenerate the Porta Romana Railway Yard by starting the development of the final project of the Masterplan, which will be delivered by May 2021, and of the Olympic Village project, which will be delivered by October 2021. The tight deadlines of the industrial development program for the redevelopment of the Porta Romana Railway Yard will also require an efficient administrative process with the commitment and collaboration of the institutions to meet the tight deadlines imposed by the planning of the Winter Olympics, requiring the delivery of the Village by July 2025.

In order to facilitate the maintenance of at least 3 months of work for the participants, without prejudice to the non-extendable deadline for the delivery of the Olympic Village for July 2025, the competition was published on 10 December 2020, simultaneously with the signing of the preliminary contract for the purchase of the area. On January 18, the first shortlist of 6 finalist teams (chosen from 47 multidisciplinary groups for a total of 329 companies from 14 countries) was selected, and today the winner has been announced.

The competition is part of the Program Agreement signed in 2017 which includes the Municipality of Milan, the Lombardy Region, the Ferrovie dello Stato Italiane Group (with Rete Ferroviaria Italiana and FS Sistemi Urbani) for the redevelopment of the seven disused railway yards (Farini, Porta Romana, Porta Genova, Greco-Breda, Lambrate, Rogoredo, San Cristoforo), which together cover an area of 1 million and 250 thousand square meters, of which about 200 thousand will remain as a railway function. This is the largest urban regeneration plan taking place in Milan in the next 20 years, one of the largest projects to regenerate and enhance the territory in Italy and in Europe. For the Scalo di Porta Romana the building areas are defined in 164,000 square meters of SL, while 50% of the Scalo will be dedicated to green areas and public spaces.

COIMA SGR, Covivio and Prada Holding have been awarded, through participation in the tender launched by the FS Italiane Group in January 2020, the Porta Romana Railway Yard (an area that covers an area of approximately 190,000 square meters, in addition to the residual portion of 26,000 square meters of railways) for 180 million euros. The development includes a large park, which will extend for about 100,000 square meters, around which residences, offices, social housing, student housing and services will be built, interconnected to the entire metropolitan area through the railway and subway stations. The Olympic Village for the 2026 Winter Games will be built inside Railway Yard and at the end of the competitions it will be transformed into student housing with about 1,000 beds by COIMA, which will also develop the free and subsidized residential component; Covivio will develop office functions and services; Prada Holding, mainly interested in the quality of the park, will build a building for laboratory and office use to extend its activities already present in the area.



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