The fashion of skyscrapers with embedded forests in Milan seems to continue. The origin of the trend must certainly be sought in the Vertical Forest; from here, on the wings of its incredible success, others are currently under construction, including the Bosconavigli which we have already talked about on the blog in the past.
But for some time in the city there has been nothing but talk of a new building with an embedded forest: it is the Womb tower, born after a private invitation-only competition, announced by Reale Mutua for a new building in the Garibaldi area. The winner is the Labics architecture studio in Rome, which proposed the construction of an 88-meter high tower with an holm oak wood inside. The building was given the curious name Torre Womb, acronym for Wellness Over Milan Bureaus, even if the creators of it also wanted to play with a double meaning, as “womb” in English translates as “uterus”, or in any case as ” womb “.
The building will be used as the headquarters of Reale Immobili, a satellite company of the group that manages and enhances the company’s real estate assets; it will rise in the place of an 8-storey building currently present, dating back to the 1950s, on the corner of via Massimo d’Azeglio and via Tito Speri. It will practically double its heights, as the tower is expected to reach 15 floors.
The Womb Tower Project
The futuristic Womb tower faithfully follows the guidelines of the most popular projects in Milan lately. Lots of light filtering through the windows, an airy atmosphere, and of course the woods inside. On the outside it will have the appearance of a pyramid of glass and concrete, slender until it reaches its maximum point at 88 meters high.
The explicit request of the tender launched by Reale Mutua for the headquarters of its real estate division was the attention to environmental comforts. Energy saving and room flexibility were the words that prompted the Labics studio, founded by Claudia Clemente and Francesco Isidori, to design their first tower.
But not only that: another key point of the call was to consider the urban context in which the skyscraper will be built, that is the Porta Nuova business district. According to the jury, the Labics project met the requirements perfectly, prefiguring “responses to reflections on new ways of working in the post-covid era”.
Results are expected, and the premises are not bad, also considering the futuristic green oasis on the ground floor, as well as terraces and open spaces for employees. Finally, the wood: we are talking about a forest of holm oaks that will develop in height, from the base to the spire, to give that suspension effect so dear to the architects who are developing their new projects in Milan. Despite the obvious similarities, the architects claim to have been inspired by the Guinigi Tower in Lucca, the most important in the city, built in stones and bricks with the presence of some holm oaks on the roof. Today it is one of the few left in the city: the more than 250 that were there in the Middle Ages today have been destroyed.
The gaze turned towards the green
Within the tender won by Labics, there were also requests relating to the sustainability of the building. In fact, it was necessary to make the Womb tower totally independent from an energy point of view for most of the months of the year.
The designers claim to have tried at all costs to “overcome the clichés of closed offices, where air cannot circulate, imagining a tower that can interact with the outside, opening up to a natural space”. Hence the idea of the holm oak forest, which will be created on an external structure that detaches from the envelope to “incorporate air, light and greenery”.