Studio Renzo Piano redesigns the historically significant Valletta City Gate in Malta.

 

The Valletta City Gate is a historic centre in the capital of Malta, comprising of new Malta Parliament. Six years ago, Studio Renzo Piano Building Workshop (RPBW) began redesigning the complex, which consists of the Opera House rebuilt from ruins and the new Valletta City Gate.

Because the project is a world heritage site, the redesign required a lot of architectural and urban planning. As a gateway to the city, Studio RPBW not only had to ensure that the significance of the area was highlighted, but they also needed to foster an open dialogue to include both historic and new buildings in the area. The dialogue that was created ensured that both history and innovation was at the forefront of the design ethos.

The complex is surrounded by the famous and impregnable XV century walls in the capital of Malta. The stone, coupled with the new buildings, helped the designers to emphasise both history and innovation.

The new Parliament building was clad with stone in order to blend in with the surrounding walls, as well as to modulate the light that penetrates the building and facilitate energy-efficiency. Studio RPBW was able to successfully create facades that integrate into the fabric of the building as well as the surrounding area.

The brises-soleil elements of the cladding were designed in accordance with the angle of the sun’s rays. CFF Filiberti Co. engineered the facade as well as the production of individual stone elements. This aspect of the project became a “project within a project” in order to ensure that the Parliament is shaped to look like a rock eroded by the wind.

One of the halls within the building will showcase an exhibition explaining the intricate, technologically advanced design process of the facade. The initiative, which was undertaken by Marmomacc, aims to highlight the technical and design possibilities of working with stone. There will also be an exhibition dedicated to this installation at the upcoming Marmomacc convention.

For more information, visit www.rpbw.com, http://www.marmomacc.com/, to whom thanks and acknowledgement are given.