Frigerio Design Group, after winning a competition to design a new technical center for Ferrero in Alba, Italy, has recently unveiled more details for the project.
The proposal for the Italian multinational food company's new facility was selected for the human values of its design proposal, which features an industrial structure integrated into the landscape. The project was inspired by the scenery, nature, and colors of the Langhe, the hilly area located in the Piedmont region of northern Italy.
The Ferrero Technical Center stems from the need to combine the company’s engineering operations, in particular those devoted to designing new production lines, with the workshop where they are developed. These functions are not currently located within the factory.
The center will be a 136,700-sf ecological building that is nZEB (nearly Zero Energy Building) and will house 200 employees. It will be able to support management and operational functions for automated and interconnected production.
Simple and linear architecture conceals plants and technical equipment while maximizing all of the passive space and minimizing the resources needed for operations and maintenance. Technology is ubiquitous throughout the new center without ever becoming obtrusive. It is seamlessly integrated in a recognizable and reassuring architecture.
Transparency and opacity define the architecture of the building. The offices located on the top floor have transparent facades while the lower floors containing the workshop and plants are hidden from view. The great hall is entirely glazed and covers one end from ground to roof with a grand staircase that connects the building’s three floors.
The workshop is designed with a minimal and essential floorpan where white is the primary color. Openings in the facade capture natural light while preventing direct sunlight. The curtain walls in this area will have micro-perforated and sound-absorbing panels to improve the quality of internal acoustics and minimize any sound pollution.
Six green areas, dubbed the flying gardens by the architect, will perform a bioclimatic, acoustic, and aesthetic function on the top floor near the offices. Additionally, a photovoltaic system on the roof generates a peak of 300 kW.
The project broke ground in 2020 and is slated for completion in December 2021.