The project picks up on an old idea of the place of hospitality, of taking care of a person or persons according to the ancient meaning of the word Ospitale as related ospite, or Host. The City of Health and Research is a model of excellence in research and technology.
It is also a space where you can make peace with nature. Sesto San Giovanni, which was once known as the city of factories, has now turned into the City of Health and Research: a place of the production of intangibles, a place of innovation and scientific research, the place of a new spirit, which will enrich this expanse of city park.
Here the interaction between humans and nature reaches a new balance. Vegetation is seen as a metaphor of healing. Spaces are understood as being made for living, for human relationships, and therefore elements that convey security, give a sense of direction, and offer harmony are employed in their construction.
In the place that will be home to excellence in research and medical treatment, humans and nature coexist. For thousands of years, humans have cured themselves with plants, and developed a deep cooperation with the plant world. The project foresees building 5 indoor gardens, which will also serve as metaphors for human organs, and a metaphor of the human being as the measure of the landscape. It will be a garden of breathing, of emotion, of fullness, and a garden of change, and rebirth. Gardens of feelings, colors, seasons, smells.
The City of Health begins with a large covered square, a place for coming together and for patient reception. These spaces enter into a dialogue with the park, and it is from this square that the main road begins, understood in its most beautiful meaning as being a place for the public. This road allows the public to have access to all outpatient services, as well as to large greenhouses, where patients and visitors can meet and visit. Once again the spaces for socializing are also spaces where humans interact with nature.
This is also the case in the patient wards where a large bow-window looks onto the indoor gardens, in the spirit of maintaining an everyday relationship with nature. In addition to the patient wards and the technical services department, which form the true “heart” of the project, the complex also provides space for research and teaching/training, which are also an essential part of the plan to focus not only on patients, but also on the future of treatment, on innovation and research, in order to improve our understanding of the human being. This is why the firm calls it a “thinking machine.” The future lives here, in Sesto San Giovanni, the City of Health and Research.
Photo credits: Mario Cucinella Architects