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The 3M Headquarters is designed by Mario Cucinella Architects and is located on the outskirts of Milan in the Pioltello district. This 10,300 square meter building represents the epitome of sustainability while hiding behind a shimmering technological aesthetic of steel that is eye catching and mesmerizing. Construction on this project began in October 2008 and after 16 quick months was operable, but before the building was fully completed, the project obtained a lot of recognition, like the US Award 09 in the Architecture category. Since its construction the building has also won the Mipim Green Building Award in 2011.

Arch2o 3M Italia Headquarters  Mario Cucinella Architects - 2

Courtesy of  Mario Cucinella Architects

The form and orientation of the building allow optimal environmental control utilizing a linear form that is 105 meters long and 21 meters wide. The building is terraced, stepping down from five to two stories that provide shaded outdoor space for the office workers as well as create an environmental buffer to eliminate effects of climate extremes in summer and winter. Specially designed glazing and shading systems were implemented on the north, east, and west facades as another more active solution to sustainability as they contain photovoltaics that help produce energy for the building. These photovoltaics are also present on the roof to add to the energy production.

Arch2o 3M Italia Headquarters  Mario Cucinella Architects - 1

Courtesy of  Mario Cucinella Architects

Eco sustainability and innovation go hand in hand with this project as particular attention was placed on blending the building structure within environmental context and the use of materials and technology. The result was this geometric composition of spaces and structural lines that run parallel to the ground plane emphasizing the horizontal nature and form of the building. To conclude, the building has two internal open sky courtyards that, together with the see-through facades equipped with insulated glass, enhance the entrance of natural light for greater brightness. The light gray and white interior with its splashes of color also emphasizes the lightness of the spaces created inside to provide a comfortable working environment.

Courtesy of  Mario Cucinella Architects

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