C + S Architects
Venice, Italy | View Map
Cultural Centres


C + S Architects as Architects

Suspended between land and sea, the landscape of the project is the lagoon of Venice. It is the landscape of a physical and mental journey through a territory that has been saved from the real estate speculation that has recently ravaged Italy. The project tries to tie together all the landscape elements: existing military constructions, traces of the farmland, the beach system and the infrastructure system which links the island to Venice. The project aims to reconstruct the complex system defined by the Massimiliano Tower, its embankments, the docks, the public landing, the beach and the farmlands insinuated between these elements, with these primary objectives: -the preservation of the monument as testimonial of a unique military defence construction; -the construction of a system of infrastructures that today guarantee the functionality of these spaces assigning specific but complementary roles to all the new constructions. One has proceeded to re-establish the contact between the tower and the landscape. A new volume, what we called a ‘contemporary enbankment’, has been designed and inserted in the missing part of the embankment; it may easily house the heating and refrigerator units, as well as new facilities for the beach. Towards the exterior the volume is designed by a succession of horizontal lines: the roof in lead without gutter, the homogeneous spacing of the openings and, finally, the horizontal surface of the gravel. In the interior the stone foundations are combined with a facing in larch boards, weathered by the sun, rain, fog and snow. Where existing, the original traces have been recovered. In order not to cancel the beauty of brick construction, the interior is left open, allowing wall to dominate the space. Inside the court, the project outlines a transparent succession of lines of shade and light through massive wood panels. The original sections of the structure blocking the grass-covered embankments have been reconstructed. The dock becomes the southern terminal of the island, but it is above all a place where land meets water. The borders in Istria stone are interwoven with the bricks below, in a point where the commercial exchange of farming products headed for Venice takes place. A pontoon in boards of Yellow-balaw wood, necessary to slide kayacks into the water, is anchored to this point. A wooden path provides access to the beach, witness of the ancient shore vocation of the place.

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