The Expo 2015 area is finally about to rise to new life. After the glories of the universal exhibition, which attracted over 20 million visitors from 140 different countries to the city, the huge area used as pavilions could find a second youth forever.
It is in fact here that the MIND, Milano Innovation District was born, which according to the architects responsible for the project is not only a new district, but a real city within the city, with characteristics such as innovative mobility, a “common ground” for everyone. and a huge linear park, which rises in correspondence with the Decumano, the avenue that runs through the district in all its length.
But today we are celebrating at MIND, as three companies of international caliber have decided to move their Italian headquarters here. We are talking about Rold, Bio4Dreams and AstraZeneca, the latter on everyone’s lips in this year of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The agreements, signed by the Landlease group, which deals with infrastructure and regeneration of urban areas, include the rental of approximately 5000 square meters of space, which will become offices, laboratories and commercial areas in the near future. According to the agreements, the deadline for the 3 companies to join the MIND fabric is set at the end of 2021. A very close deadline, and one wonders whether or not they will be able to honor.
But the list of applicants for a place at MIND is long: over 100 companies have expressed interest, with promises to bring technological innovation projects and research and development activities to the city.
But why all this interest around MIND? Simple: the innovation district of Milan has within it partners of the caliber of the University of Milan, the Galeazzi Institute and the Triulza foundation. This will allow (private) companies to collaborate and develop ideas together with the three (public) bodies in a new context for everyone, but definitely stimulating.
The new hosts of MIND
Rold, Bio4Dreams and AstraZeneca are the first companies to become part of this new city district, located in the Rho area.
Rold is a leader in the design of components and solutions in the domestic, professional and industrial sectors. Bio4Dreams is the first privately held Italian incubator in the life science sector, and AstraZeneca is a world leader in scientific research, among the few pharmaceutical companies to have developed and marketed an effective vaccine against COVID-19.
The three companies are represented by Lendlease, for which the head of the Italian and European division Andrea Ruckstuhl spoke, stating that he was proud to “announce the entry of the first companies to MIND: each of them is an excellence, and confirm MIND as an ideal place for innovation and for the development of the cities of the future “.
MIND: the project in detail
The huge area on which MIND has been and will be built will develop from a “common ground”, a common ground located on the ground floor, a meeting place for all inhabitants and workers. In the creators of the project, this will be a space completely open to citizens, where public and semi-public courtyards will alternate, to create a lively and pleasant pedestrian area.
At the same time, the central axis of the site, the viale Decumano (so called because in the ancient Roman cities it was the main street that ran east-west) will become a linear urban green park, from which to reach every point of the area: it will therefore represent a spinal column, the main axis of shared spaces.
Finally, the designers’ idea is to build a city of the future also in terms of mobility, with a driverless and light mobility district in mind, to optimize time and resources. Large areas dedicated to parking will therefore be converted, with the well-being of the people at the center.