NET with OMA & Laboratorio Permanente for the future of Milan

with the proposal called ”Agenti climatici” the Dutch study of Rem Koolhaas won the international competition for the former Farini and San Cristoforo railway yards urban regeneration in Milan. Within the project group also NET Engineering

It has been the greatest international competition for urban regeneration recently.

A multidisciplinary team led by the OMA studio of Rem Koolhaas and Laboratorio Permanente has been awarded the first prize for its project proposal called “Agenti climatici” (i.e. Climate Agents).  The project includes an extensive linear park in the center of  Milan from Porta Nuova to the west side. NET Engineering and Arcadis gave their own contribution as engineering companies expert in the issues of sustainability and transport. In addition there were: Philippe Rahm architects (specialised in meteorological architecture), Vogt Landscape Architects (landscape designers), Ezio Micelli (expert in urban policies) and Temporiuso (a cultural association).

The project included two different environmental devices for the railway yards undergoing regeneration:

  • for the Farini yard, a large linear forest capable of purifying the air and cooling the south-western hot winds;
  • for the San Cristoforo yard, a long linear system for water purification.

The “OMA + Laboratorio Permanente” team’s project has overcome the other 4 finalist groups (Baukuh, Arup, Grimshaw and Kengo Kuma and Associates Europe). In the team’s proposal, the climate and geographical conditions have become instruments of a sustainable project aimed at reversing the irrational consumption of non-renewable sources in order to balance the relationship between human beings and the environment.

The new system of spaces and connections in the Milan’s railway yard area was designed to be the ideal urban habitat for pedestrian mobility. A complex system of infrastructures that allows the area not only to be reached but to become itself an intermodal platform for people and goods between the metropolitan area and the city center.

The pedestrian areas amount to 90% of the total planned roads, in a projection towards a near future in which mobility will become an autonomous and shared service, making the private car obsolete and freeing up the spaces connected to it.

“The project is respectful of the city’s urban history with streets, squares, gardens, parks and introduces great flexibility and diversity of use for the population. It is an urban development strategy, in order to be able to live and work in the new Farini district and move with slow pedestrian & cycle paths – declared Jury President Dominique Perrault – Farini yard insists in an existing city and must rehabilitate the current buildings. Flexibility, durability, different uses, inclusiveness are the qualifying elements of the winning proposal”.

The new masterplan will undergo a public consultation phase through listening and discussion with all stakeholders, in order to implement at its best the final project, in the context of a participated process that will involve the Milanese citizens in defining the strategic choices for the future of the city.


april 12th, 2019