News release - 2020

Agnese Ghini Award 2020

Our two graduates Serena Rosa and Consuelo Montanelli, thanks to prof. Marco Imperadori have won the first prize for the best graduate project "Agnese Ghini Award" with their thesis MULHER.
Link Teams - Thesis presentation - Friday 20th November 2020 - 10.30am Teams live streaming.

The thesis concerns the planning of buildings, in equatorial climate, addressed to women and to child nutrition. The main project, Mulher, was developed after the direct experience of planning the small nutritional centre Papagaio, for a mission in Farim, where food is prepared for children in diffculty using only local raw ingredients.This project was achieved thanks to the collaboration with many professionals and missionaries. Understanding the reality of the mission in Farim was the starting point to realise which were the local necessities and which building to propose in the project.
In the thesis we’ve analysed the condition of women in Guinea Bissau, particularly in Farim, which seems to be very unstable. The female population takes care of the majority of the agricultural works, it is committed to the sale of the products they've grown, usually to sustain the family and it trade sand and earth which are gathered and used in construction works.
This trade takes place at roadside in poor hygienic conditions.
This has led to the conception of Mulher, a centre where women have access to healthcare assistance, classrooms and laboratories to improve literacy, canteen, accommodations, and spaces to be taught handcraft and how to sell products. The facility is composed by small buildings separated one from another but connected by a big roof that creates inner courtyards and guarantees the comfort of the spaces.The project has the purpose of using local materials available in nature, so the structure chosen is made of bamboo, the walls are flled with raw earth and the roof is made of straw and dry leaves.
To build the walls has been used a traditional constructive technology of the South America, known as Bahareque, which is already used in the Philippines and is now spreading across Africa. This technique combines raw earth’s heat performances with bamboo’s structural resistance.
The upholstery made of straw is sustained by a bamboo frame which was possible to verify thanks to a process of reverse engineering applied on the project of lan Ritchie for Arte Stella. This helped us to gather data and to gain a solid experience, allowing us to understand better how the bamboo frame is infuenced by shape in the Mulher project.
The thatch is sustained by a secondary roof frame which leans on bamboo reticular beams, arranged in correspondence of the buildings, while the overhang are sustained by structural shadings which are the result of the feld experience: the planning and the construction of the zero pavilion at the labyrinth of Masone. Every binding between the bamboo canes has been made of hemp rope as the typical oriental binding, respecting as more as possible the choice of using natural materials.
The mix between earth and bamboo and the complex shape of the building have led to interesting heat and structural results which have been evaluated during the architectural planning, thanks to studies and simulations.
Finally the realisation of a 1:2 scale prototype of a corner, made possible thanks to the collaboration with the construction school of Lecco, has allowed us to go beyond the theorical aspect and to understand directly both the realisation complexity and the feasibility of the work.

Press release Agnese Ghini Award 2020 (available only in Italian)

The Politecnico is participating in the regeneration of Via Quarti in Milan

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A collaboration pact between the City and citizens for a new green road at the entrance to Cave Park

The first results from the project to regenerate Via Quarti in Milan, which the Politecnico also took part in, have been presented. Neighbourhood institutions, associations, and citizens came together for a moment of sharing and interaction. As in other areas of the city, the winning formula in Via Quarti was also the result of a Collaboration Pact between the City and citizens. (...)
 ‘Quarti Park’ grew out of interaction between associations, residents, the West Road Project research group in the Department of Architecture and Urban Studies at the Politecnico di Milano, and Italia Nostra. The proposal is to test new uses between the neighbourhood and Cave Park, starting with a physical change at the end of the street, a ‘space for all’, and a new gate for the park. It was realized with a contribution and the sponsorship of the City of Milan and Zone 7, with the support of Italia Nostra (trees and planting), Vestre AS (furniture supplies), and Shareradio. (...)

The West Road Project research programme began three years ago. It regards the Western Sector of Milan, which is divided at its centre by the historical Via Novara. The idea to imagine it as an axis of the slow network served as a stimulus to charge ‘moving well’ with the task of unveiling and activating spaces for interaction, in particular starting with the most difficult nodes in the ‘peripheral archipelago’

explains Andrea Di Franco, scientific coordinator of West Road Project.(...)

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PIDA 2020 PRIZE, Premio Internazionale Ischia di Architettura / Ischia Architecture International Award

On 2nd October 2020, Chiara Re Depaolini and Gianluca Crippa, recently graduated in Building Engineering/Architecture at Politecnico di Milano, were awarded with the PIDA 2020 prize for their thesis, discussed in July 2020 with professor Marco Imperadori as supervisor.


This prize aims to support a change of Italian architecture and design and to increase awareness and responsibility of designers. The focus is on projects related to tourism and recovery of areas damaged by the earthquake in August 2017.

“MAIOlica, Light Innovative CFS Architecture, Ricostruzione del quartiere e progetto di una scuola di ceramica al Maio, Casamicciola Terme, con tecnologie innovative CFS a secco in zona sismica”
Chiara Re Depaolini, Gianluca Crippa

On 21 August 2017 an earthquake deprived the inhabitants of Maio, in Casamicciola Terme, of their homes, workshops and landmarks. Walking along via D'Aloisio, which is still today the red zone, one has the feeling that time has stopped on that summer night, however Maio is not still and MAIOlica aims to respond to the inhabitants call for attention.
This project intends to shake up Casamicciola by providing a sustainable way to learn from the past construction errors and to rediscover the identity of the place underneath the tourism growth over the last few decades. An alternative, which reminds the very nature of the Isola Verde and encourages sociality, is proposed against the building fabric closure and the soil sealing.
Living quarters are reborn thank to the CASA 2.0 project, which respectfully fits in the surroundings recalling local colours and materials by using tiles and gabion walls made with green tuff. We chose to carry on a focus on the CASA 2.0 project, centred on the PIDA House, a casa d'artista supported by PIDA, a local association devoted to architecture and design. This choice allowed a deeper understanding of several fundamental issues in a seismic zone, such as the pre-fabrication, the speed of installation and the emergency response, in order to find alternatives to what was done in the past in other parts of Italy.
MAIOlica, the school of ceramics and core of this thesis, following the master plan, is located among the new residences and aims to become a landmark for this area: on one hand it supports the traditional production of ceramics and on the other it attracts new flows of people to this village at the foot of Monte Epomeo.
The whole project was studied in all respects in order to provide a sustainable and seismically safe reconstruction vision. In this view, next to the CFS profiles, high-performance and dry-layered technical packages are placed with particular façade claddings.
In-fact BiPV panels and green roofs were chosen to provide both clean energy production and low impact on a place subject to hydro-geological risks.
The ceramics are the fil rouge that links all different aspects of the project by characterizing school and houses elevations and indissolubly binding them to MAIO(lica).

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Greta Pavillon

Politecnico di Milano (research group: prof Imperadori and other academics), scientific partners for the SOU-School of Architecture for children, won the prize offered by the Ministry (thanks also to the Greta pavilion) by Farm Cultural Park.

The concept behind the design of this pavilion is nature, sustainability and the desire to bring vegetation into the elegant streets of Favara. The building located in the courtyard of Palazzo Miccichè aims to contrast the classical artistic value and the almost sublime beauty of the historic building, giving priority to new, innovative and sustainable materials. Inspired by the young Swedish activist Greta Thunberg, who is trying to raise awareness of environmental issues around the world, the pavilion wants to represent the green lantern that brings these issues to the Favara Architecture Festival. Nature will be the master by flanking the structure, completing the furnishings and also as an element of design since it represents the best architecture in the world 

Greta Pavillon is created by the reuse of two sections of the lightweight prefabricated structure in steel profiles of the DTL-Delight The Light pavilion, made in Piazza Castello in Milan during the Milan Design City of 2018. The structure is composed of columns and beams with a hut cover: all the connections between the elements are made dry through the moulding of plates, nuts and bolts. 

On the longest span of 270 cm, polycarbonate panels, known as “Makrolon Covestro”, also coming from the DTL pavilion, are mounted directly on the covering metal profiles and joined by special metallic elements that guarantee water resistance. A metallic bump has been planned on the filling, which will guarantee watertightness and natural ventilation. On the cover of the shortest section, 160 cm, is fixed the work of the artist Scarabotttolo, composed of two metal sheets appropriately carved to bring out through the voids the artist’s design.

The Living Factory, Mumbai - Competition results

The Living Factory is a multifunctional tall building specifically designed for Dharavi, India’s largest informal settlement. This particular area of Mumbai is regarded as a place of extreme poverty and unhealthy conditions, but it also carries many precious qualities and hosts thriving businesses that are fundamental for the overall city’s subsistence. Our project is not only meant to accommodate these typical local mini-industries, but also to formalize them since the informal sector is a great part and issue of India’s economy, while at the same time providing all the spaces needed for the development of a sustainable future of the area and the improvement of the dwellers’ life (ranging from a “haat” open market, spaces for education, women empowerment, urban agriculture, offices, entrepreneurship, spirituality, up to tourism and leisure). This has been accomplished by following a progressive vertical organization of the activities based on their heaviness/lightness and their openness to the public. Therefore, through its pragmatic program, the tall building becomes the voice of its inhabitants, a realistic container for slum residents’ skills, competences, and their ability to remain active in the evolving socio-economic life of the city, in order to achieve civic emancipation while preserving their heritage. Not only the building program has been extensively researched, but also a special thought has been put in the particular climatic conditions of Mumbai and the double-layered façade design, which promotes natural ventilation and daylight in the interior while employing three different main materials in the sequence of blocks. Beneath the façade, all the interior spaces have been carefully carved and manipulated by trimming and shifting floors and creating atria, terraces and sloping slabs: this to provide interesting human-scale-related architectural spaces and comfortable elevator-free vertical circulation for both people and goods inside the programmatic blocks. Ultimately, we hope that our project may inspire a sustainable redevelopment for Dharavi’s slum, together with a coordinated action of selected formalization and punctual urban tissue improvements, unlike many of the current insensitive plans that are threatening to raze to the ground about one million people’s livelihoods and cultures.


  • Alessandro Azzolini
  • Bahar Chouksey
  • Benart Shala
  • Juan Carlos Medina
  • Made Harris Kuncara
  • María José Montero
  • Pham Hong Ngoc
  • Tanadeth Mahapolsirikun        


  • Maria Grazia Folli
  • Corrado Pecora
  • Marco Imperadori
  • Antonio Mannino

Design studio:

  • Architectural Design Studio for Complex Constructions 1

Study Course:

  • MSc Building Architecture (English track)

Competition 1 (Semi-finalists)

  • CTBUH 2020 International Student Tall Building Design Competition
  • Semi-finalists (among the top 30 projects of over 200 submissions)

Link: only the first-prize winners are published on their website, so our project will not appear there in the future)

Competition 2 (Shortlisted)

  • Skyhive 2020 Skyscraper Challenge
  • Vertical Refuge. Studenti: Yinglei Li, Yifei Mi, Tong Li, Hamza Yaseen
  • Urban Food Factory in Sao Paulo. Studenti: Shkelqim Musiqi, Elvis Karavianskii, Sofia Manferdini, Elio Zeiater Nassar
  • The Living Factory. Studenti: Made Harris Kuncara, Alessandro Azzolini, Hong Ngoc Pham, Benart Shala
  • Correctional Facility a Detroit. Studenti:  Pauline Duléry, Simone Perilli, Sevval Derebey
  • Recovery at Canberra. Studenti: Kristina Perkova, Serra Gokkaya, Mina Javanfardkalyan, Tuba Betul Kara

Link: (all the results are published online)

*** Note ***

For both competitions, we were asked to register in teams of maximum of 4 or 5 people, so the names that appear in both results were chosen at random by us. However, all the 8 members of the design team actually contributed to the project.

Prize "Paride Passerini" year 2019

18.05.2020. Mirko Borzone and Roberta Simone, students in Building Engineering/Architecture, were awarded by the prize "Paride Passerini" year 2019 in ex aequo for the best Master’s Degree thesis among those facing the thematic "Design, construction and production solutions for sustainable construction according to consolidated parametric protocols".

The evaluation parameters were the following:

  • the effectiveness of sustainable design choices compared to a traditional design, in terms of performance;
  • the conscious and innovative use of materials and/or technological systems;
  • the optimization of the building energy system;
  • the economic impact of design choices aimed at sustainability, in terms of both design, implementation, management and disposal;
  • the analysis and comparison of reference protocols and their effectiveness on sustainability;
  • the study and implementation of sustainability certification schemes for both buildings and products;
  • the analysis and evaluation of certification’s technological and economic effects on the market, both in terms of improving the construction standard and in terms of spreading sustainability models in the construction sector.

Steel Soul is conceived from the desire to give the Maio area, locate in Casamicciola Terme, back to its residents. This quarter, uninhabited after August 2017 earthquake, is inaccessible due to its precarious conditions for the collapses that have occurred and the buildings’ instability. Steel Soul is a prototype for the anti-seismic design of active buildings with high energy efficiency; the project was developed on three lots along Via D’Aloisio, with the idea of giving a new constructive typology, from the structural, technological and energetic point of view. The project starts with the analysis of the actual state of the buildings in order to classify them according to the level of damage. As a result, the aim is to demolish and redesign the most damaged buildings according to the criteria described above. The project is focused on three intervention sites, C.A.S.A., Re(Ho)use and LaBB, in which there are commercial, residential and hotel functions. The study of the technological solutions applied in the project was conceived taking part to a research project carried out in collaboration with Irondom company. It was conducted in order to define the solutions to use based on the evaluation of technological and energy performance, analysed both on static and dynamic mode thanks to finite-element modelling. The envelope analysis, made for the research building, allowed us to compare different technological solutions and to identify the best suited to the design needs; the stratigraphy defined were then applied in the dynamic simulation model carried out on the C.A.S.A. building, aimed at classifying it according to the Active House protocol. In addition, the structural system used was analysed in detail; first from an analytical point of view with simple profile check, and then numerically, through verifications on single elements and the entire structure, taking into account the seismic behaviour. Steel Soul is the crasis between tradition and innovation. On one side there is the architectural project that promotes the mimesis of new buildings with the existing ones, thanks to the use of typical architectural typologies, materials and colours. On the other side, we propose Active House protocol principles, evaluating comfort, energy and environment parameters. To achieve this goal, design strategies based on energy saving and the use of materials with a low environmental impact are adopted. Moreover, the research project Tepore II allowed the analysis on the PCM functioning, a technological solution adopted in dry construction systems with low thermal inertia. Those are optimal for Ischia’s climate since they allow to add artificial thermal inertia to the building envelope. Steel Soul contains several themes combined to conceive the project: experimentation, research, reuse, resilience are the elements that propose the rebirth of the Maio area considering the long tradition of the place.

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Three AUIC thesis awarded at the Italian Sustainable Architecture Award 2020

Due to the difficult period that marked the beginning of 2020, the successes of our students and graduates arise three awarded Master's thesis.

Congratulations to Tecla Caroli and Claudio Portogallo for the GOLD MEDAL for the category - Architecture and Sustainable Technologies in the context of the Italian Sustainable Architecture Award 2020.

Congratulations also to Arianna Scaioli, Kevin Santus and Stefano Sartorio for the HONORABLE MENTION for the category - Sustainable Urban and Landscape Design.  

Congratulations also to Andrea Bonaiti, Pier Paolo Mainetti and Luca Sironi for the HONORABLE MENTION for the category - Architecture and Sustainable Technologies

  • GOLD MEDAL for the category - Architecture and Sustainable Technologies - Master's thesis in Architecture by Tecla Caroli and Claudio Portogallo, discussed in the session of April 2018, supervisor prof. Andrea Campioli - HOME * project: Humanitarian and (un) Ordinary Machine for Emergency

    Project abstract:
    home* is a home and not only.
    As the name says, it is a home for man, which takes into account the emergency context and offers strength and dignity to living despite the extreme situation. It is a humanitarian intervention (Humanitarian), because the architect's job is to solve the problem of living in any context. It is an ordinary house located in an extraordinary environment (unOrdinary), which continuously offers new possibilities, always keeping in mind the space and time dimensions. It is a machine for emergency (Machine for Emergency) because thought in its each detail, every element is flexible for different needs and different purposes, everything is designed to be effective and efficient, from the method to design, build and live it, to its image and perception.
    It is a thesis project that required a careful and critical study of the context and the operators involved; the design of a housing system and of its entire life cycle, from the planning to end of life phase. The result achieved is a sustainable system at environmental, social and economic  levels that meets the needs of man and the world around him.

    HOME*: Humanitarian and (un)Ordinary Machine for Emergency. Una casa in legno per l’emergenza, in “Legno Architettura”, n. 34, January 2019, pp. 92-99.
    Existenzminimum 2.0. HOME*: Humanitarian and (un)Ordinary Machine for Emergency, in “IoArch”, n. 76, July-August 2018, pp. 28-29.

  • HONOURABLE MENTION for the category - Sustainable Urban and Landscape Design - Master's Degree Thesis in Architecture by Arianna Scaioli, Kevin Santus and Stefano Sartorio, discussed in the session of December 2019, supervisor prof. Ilaria Valente - Cities on the sides project - Circular economy design strategies and resilience in the redesign of Porto di Mare   

    Project abstract:   
    This thesis deals with the regeneration of the area of Porto di Mare, located in the southern part of the city of Milan, whose character is defined by some phenomena of marginality, criticity but at the same time of potentiality. The project is set within a fragile territory, where feeble signs coexist with stratified and consolidated traces of the territory. In this condition, the architectural project can be conceived as a resilient project, conceived not only of responding to the current needs of the place and the city, but also of configuring itself as an adaptive framework, capable of facing climate, environmental, economic and social changes that future prospects. Within this scenario, it’s introduced the concept of circular economy, an instrument for designing, in which the development by temporal phases is combined with the study of the life cycle, in relation to the territory in which it is located. The thesis, therefore, aims to define what are the characteristics of the urban border, in order to pursue the regeneration of a part of the city, through the identification of operational strategies, explained by some project focuses.

  • HONOURABLE MENTION for the category - Architecture and Sustainable Technologies - Master's Degree Thesis in Building Engineeering / Architecture by Andrea Bonaiti, Pier Paolo Mainetti and Luca Sironi, discussed in the session of Otcober 2018, supervisor prof. Gabriele Masera; examiners: prof. Marco Muscogiuri, prof. Marco Pesenti, prof. Darko Radović, prof. Giulio Zani - project: AGRI+CULTURE / The New City Centre of Casatenovo

    Project abstract:  
    The thesis project AGRI+CULTURE started from the 2010 competition for the redevelopment of the Vismara Area. During the following eight years several urban projects have been developed, but none of them is yet implemented. The Vismara is an industrial area that influenced the urbanistic and economic growth of Casatenovo, a small village in Brianza.
    Starting from the tender of 2010, the aim of this master thesis is the development of an urban project for the whole area, with a special focus on the study of a new library for Casatenovo. (...) Every aspect of the project has been systematically developed with deep analysis and specific software simulations. Then, the results have been implemented according to a multi-disciplinary approach, finding out the best architectural or engineering solution.

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