Our proposal for the future Palazzo del Cinema di Locarno aims to build the project from a number of specific considerations, both the institution and its particular location within Locarno. We understand that the Palazzo del Cinema di Locarno pretends to become a leading institution in the international film industry, and so, we consider that the building must have a significant presence in today’s cityscape, becoming a new reference for the city and focusing on creating a new identity for the future of both, the Palazzo and its resulting public space.
In this sense, when conceiving our proposal for the future Film Centre in Locarno (Palazzo del Cinema di Locarno), we have tried to avoid the idea that public architecture needs to make extravagant gestures in order to curate our cities public realm. On the contrary, our proposal is guided by principles of economy, trying to capitalise in the public affection for the building to provide an architectural identity for the new cinema complex in piazzeta Remo Rossi. There are two primary intentions that guide our project:
_ Economy of resources. The intention to recycle the traditional city. At a time when energy resources are dwindling and climate change has become a crucial problem for our cities, it would have been irresponsible to simply discard the existing building in order to build a new one, with the corresponding expenditure of vital resources. Urban Recycling is a more adequate strategy for this intervention. Revitalising the piazzeta Remo Rossi as an urban public space associated with the new function of the building as a new Film Centre for Locarno is also an important part of the strategy. We do not believe that the construction of an entirely new building will be more economic that the refurbishment of the old building. The expenditure needed to consolidate the structure and enlarge the foundations of the Palazzo scolastico will be saved from the rebuilding of an entirely new envelope for the complex.
_ Consolidation and rebranding of the public identity of the Palazzo del Cinema di Locarno. It is our intention to capitalise on the public appreciation for the Palazzo scolastico and piazzeta Remo Rossi in order to provide a strong identity to the new facility planned in the area. But the building needs to assume the representation of its new function as a centre for international film culture with a distinctive presence, but being able to consolidate the pre-existent urban fabric. The articulation between the old building’s fabric and Locarno’s Film Festival, the CCCA and the AF will produce the new physical presence of the complex. We believe that a superficial treatment of the existing shell will perform a very effective rebranding of the structure.
First Prize / International Competition
Palazzo del Cinema di Locarno. Locarno, Switzerland.
Locarno city council and Stella Chiara foundation.
6500m2 building + 2000 m2 public realm
Alejandro Zaera-Polo, Maider Llaguno, Robert Berenguer, Manuel Eijo, Guillermo Fernandez-Abascal, Ravi Lopes Calamita