Terracotta GreenBuilding in Milan: new multifunctional center at Porta Vittoria

15 Jul Terracotta GreenBuilding in Milan: new multifunctional center at Porta Vittoria

Porta Vittoria is a new multifunctional center, located near to the center of Milan. Its strategic position makes it a place full of services and activities.

It is the area of “Parco Largo dei Marinai d’Italia” where to spend free time in the warm Seasons, going jogging or shopping. Close to the historic city Court and to Corso XXII Marzo, famous avenue leading to “Piazza Cinque Giornate”, an area particularly full of activities, restaurants, events and some of the most famous clubs of the Milan night life.

The complex is air-conditioned by means of a heat exchanging system, allowing the use of well water and consequent energy savings.The commercial areas are covered with a green roof to improve their impact on the nearby residences (Energy class A).

The entire project by Architect Nonis Milan is divided into a number of architectural blocks, with external stone, wood and terracotta cladding, overlooking the vast green areas, both private and public, all equipped to complete the residential complex with a suitable allocation of green spaces.

Palagio Engineering has been in charge of the terracotta production, the project engineering and the installation of the ventilated facade in terracotta and the terracotta louvers covering the residential building “B”.


The anchoring system of the ventilated terracotta facade is Alusystem XL by Palagio Engineering combined with the Sunscreen System for the terracotta louvers. Complete technical support during planning guaranteed the project aesthetics and maximum functional efficiency, respecting environmental standards The fixing system consists in one main profile to hold both, terracotta tiles and tubes, which have been pre assembled as louver panels in the factory to optimize the installation process.

A particular feature of the project is the creation of a primary metal structure to carry the terracotta louvers at floors 8, 9 and 10. This visible structure has been entirely realized with painted aluminum in a color imitating the terracotta extrusions.The ventilated terracotta façade has been realized with terracotta panels TerraModus and terracotta tubes TerraShade, both produced as full-body extrusions in color Terre Bruciate 249.

The north elevation is covered with terracotta panel Terramodus alternating three different panel heights, 200, 300 and 400 mm.

Terramodus is a single extruded, hollow terracotta panel, with overlaps at upper and lower edges for invisible anchoring. The calibrated length of the panel is obtained by cutting after firing and grants highest precision of the vertical joints.

The ventilated façade on the south elevation, with openings of the balconies, is alternating with terracotta sunscreens located on the balcony openings, positioned both as parapets and fascia to grant an optimized protection from sunrays. Terracotta tube model TerraShade 5009, extruded in length 1000 and 1200 mm, has been used for this application. The main feature of this element is its length: in fact this louver can be extruded in one single piece with a length up to 3000 mm thanks to a particular production technique.

Details of Palagio Engineering scope:

  • Engineering and Shop drawings of the ventilated facade, including detail and “as build” drawings, cutting lists, structural calculation report according to the standards.
  • Supply and installation of the fixing system for the terracotta panels realized in aluminum alloy 6063. The “XL System” is composed of vertical profiles and adjustable brackets, fastened to the backup wall with mechanical / chemical anchor bolts; the individual panels are held by aluminum clips fixed to the tracks by a suitable support bracket; the vertical tracks are installed with a center/center distance of 1000 / 1200 mm.
  • Supply and installation of a fixing system for sunscreens realized in aluminum 6063 (painted in RAL 8016). The “Sunscreen System” is composed of vertical profiles installed with a 1000/1200 mm center/center distance, suitable to carry the louver panels preassembled in the factory.
  • Supply and installation of terracotta panel “TerraModus” (height 200, 300 and 400 mm, length 1000 mm) for the main part of the cladding, including sub modules as compensation elements; only a minor part of the south elevation has been cladded with 1200 mm long elements. The terracotta comes in color TerreBruciate 249 with a sandblasted texture.
  • Supply and installation of terracotta tubes “TerraShade 5009” (square section 50x50mm, length 1000/1200 mm) for the louvers. The terracotta comes in color TerraBruciate 249 with a smooth extruded finish.
  • Supply and installation of the metal framing for the anchoring of the terracotta cladding at floors 8-9-10 (painted RAL 8016).
  • Supply and installation of a black EPDM aesthetic seal “G01” for a perfect alignment of the vertical joints between the terracotta panels (south, east, west elevation).
  • Installation of a thermal insulation, rock wool, thickness 60mm and density 70kg/mc.
  • Cleaning of the installed facade with a weakly acidic solution, to remove dirt accumulated during installation and to grant a perfect aesthetic result of the terracotta facade.
  • Application of a “water-resistant” treatment, to reduce water absorption and increase resistance against atmospheric pollution.

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