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Academic year
Didactic period
Secondo Semestre

Training objectives


The laboratory aims to stimulate a reflection on urban regeneration, tracing back its premises to the financial-economic crisis internationally widespread from 2008 onwards, in order to critically asses its effects on territorial and urban transformation. Since the field of investigation is not yet grounded on theories and consolidated praxis, students will be guided through the analysis of the most important practices available, both at national and international level, referring them to the preliminary investigation of four distinctive phases, mutually related and articulated according to scalar differentiation. They have to derive from the interpretation of the context’s material and immaterial aspects and are articulated as follows: the identification of potential stakeholders; the definition of the corresponding rules of mutual engagement; the promotion of design actions, distinguishing technical and urban aspect, economic and financial feasibility and communication strategy; the definition of the activities to allocate in the space. Due to those premises, the design assignment will focus on a decommissioned industrial site within a middle-size metropolitan area. The proposal should set up a reactivation strategy of the site. Starting from the changing horizon generated by the crisis, students will be invited to rethink instruments and objectives of the work of the architect, taking into particular attention his/her social role within the contemporary conjuncture.


Students are expected to acquire a deep knowledge regarding the complex dynamics dealing with society, economics, politics and culture, which are qualifying the contemporary time, understanding their fundative principles and the reciprocal interrelations. In that perspective, it is crucial to identify the “regeneration potential”, which establishes the capacity of the architectural design to involve the all aspects into which ideally the social reality is internally articulated. In such a way, architecture can guarantee their own cross-fertilization through its action. Coherently, students have to recognize the necessity to act within multidisciplinary team, thought which it is possible to recognize the different instances developed by stakeholders claiming a role within the transformative processes.



Students, in order to fruitfully dealing with urban regenerations, should demonstrate a clear attitude to multidisciplinary, mutually relating the plurality of the investigated phenomena. The knowledge acquired in the course of Theory of Architectural Research, especially in relation to Urban Morphology and Building Typology, are considered fundamental. Moreover, it has to be reminded that the Lab of Architectural design III is a mandatory perquisite.


Students, in order to fruitfully dealing with urban regenerations, should demonstrate a clear attitude to multidisciplinary approach, mutually relating the plurality of the investigated phenomena.

Course programme

Coherently to formative objectives and prerequisites, the laboratory title will be “Regenerating the decommissioned. The city as limit”. The course will start from the programmatic state of indeterminacy prompted by the contemporary urban phenomena, literally suspended between the “not anymore” delivered by the creative finance recent failure and the “not yet” of the community to come. Students will be asked to critically reflect on a case-history which emblematically states the complexity of the current situation, of course preselected by Lab responsible people. Both the preliminary analyses and the first explorations have to demonstrate their inherence to uncertainties, programmatic instability and multiplicity already reminded, developing it in order to define challenged “research questions”. The design assignment shall answer those questions, both in compositional and materials terms. To guarantee the aim, all the disciplines will run parallel to achieve the expected results according to the following contents:


The module will offer students the general framework into which the critical reflection on the relation between design and preexisting conditions progressively developed from the post-World War II onwards. The narrative will be articulated according to clearly defined cultural seasons. This achievement will guarantee students to achieve a deep knowledge of the actual condition and its necessity.


The module will offer students the specific case studies, representatives of the general framework dealing with regeneration process, in order to learn the lesson of the protagonists.


The module will offer students the basic legislative instruments to deal with regeneration processes. In such a way, it will be possible to understand the economic-financial and social-political implications of their own hypotheses in relation to the elected site-specific conditions.

Didactic methods

Learning assessment procedures

Reference texts

Urban Task Force, Towards an Urban Renaissance, E & FN Spoon, London, 1999
KCAP, Situations, NAI Publishers, Rotterdam, 2005
LSE, Deutsche Bank,The Endless City, London, Phaidon, 2008
Martina Baum, Kees Christiaanse,City as Loft, London, GTA Publisher, 2013
G. Clement, Manifesto del terzo paesaggio, Quodlibet, 2005