In refining our design we have actively sought to honour Barilla’s familial and Italian roots while simultaneously capturing the progressive spirit at the heart of this project. It is our understanding that this pavilion should be the physical embodiment of Barilla’s past, present and future; we envision our entry as a place de ned by dialogue between company and community, and it is this sentiment that has led us to organize our concept around The Barilla forum.
The metaphorical connection that we are drawing with this name is both historical—the great forums constructed by the Romans during the era of the Republic, large open internal spaces that were used for everyday encounters between citizen and city— and a gesture to the modern concept of a more open and global economy—“forum” in a current context evokes ideological confrontation, culture, and social contact.
Like an ancient forum, our pavilion is a communal plaza, and we envision it as the tangible center of Barilla’s day- to-day life, the place where the individual can meet and experience the brand, as well as contribute ideas of their own in order to help Barilla open up to the world.
Over 50 meters in diameter, the inner open courtyard is designed to serve as the forum’s communal focal point and an outdoor extension for Barilla’s art collection. A shallow pond feature is a large part of the courtyard’s landscaping strategy, an aesthetic and atmospheric decision that is also a subtle reference to water’s role in the pasta creation process. It’s our vision that the courtyard will be filled with fixed sculptures, with a large wind-oriented mobile rising through the center (and above the building’s 16.5 meter height limit), a nod both to Barilla’s agrarian roots and an easily and immediately recognizable beacon for the pavilion.
Influenced by Barilla’s communal approach to corporate and campus organization, our interior design responds to the brief’s programming requirements with a clearly sequenced collection of spaces that are concretely articulated in form but ultimately flexible in spirit. Like a well-designed home, each space is best understood contextually, and best judged by its relationship to the forum as a whole.
Organized around the three main thematic areas, our circular scheme is composed of three levels that surround an exposed courtyard. Mondo Barilla, the site’s largest and most public programming, occupies the majority of the first level, while the smaller second level is planned to house the main elements of the Barilla Cultural Hub (with the Barilla Family Art Collection and Temporary Spaces on the first) and a full service bar.
The third level will hold the entirety of the Barilla Development Hub, an area designed as both a work space and a meeting place, removed but not isolated from the building’s larger community.
We carefully planned for a continuous experience for visitors, guests, and employees, and we envision the Barilla forum as a dynamic embodiment of Barilla’s legacy, values, and potential.
Reflecting Barilla’s long-standing commitment to both their people and their place, we have decided on a human-centric approach to the environment that aspires to meet the strictest sustainability standards while also being mindful of best practices in modern health and wellness. To this end, we have chosen to pursue WELL Building Standards, an international certification program that requires compliance to a rigorous set of specifications “focused exclusively on the ways that buildings, and everything in them, can improve our comfort, drive better choices, and generally enhance, not compromise, our health and wellness.”
The key distinction in our plan is between construction and performance. Construction strategies include our choice to invest significantly in wood timber and adherence to strict site management requirements, while performance is dictated by the totality of our “Smart Barilla” design and the accompanying water and energy efficiency systems.