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A sustainable future.
Initially considered the "icons of the consumer society”, shopping malls are becoming the lighthouses of energy efficient systems and sustainable architecture.
The hand of the internationally renowned architect Mario Botta designs the interior layout of the new wing of the Factory Stores in Mendrisio, which opens in June 2022.
An important enhancement project that focuses on sustainability and the creative reuse of natural materials.
The recovery will be the urban planning of the future' is what architect Botta says, according to which the general direction in our sector will no longer be to further expand the urbanized area but to build on what has already been built. It is a diktat dictated by a greater awareness of the fragility of the balance and a growing sensitivity towards the territory and the past.
The theme of reuse is also central to the interior design made with wood from the Vaia storm that hit north-eastern Italy in October 2018: 'we have given an ethical and life-giving meaning to a raw material that is already recyclable in itself. We have recovered an element that would otherwise have been destroyed, to give it added value, both from an ecological and an ethical point of view, 'says Botta. The expansion has an image in step with the times and speaks of a new and widespread sensitivity to sustainability. The structure is welcoming, functional and expressive: 'the result is very impressive, very eloquent and also somewhat countercultural because it has a local identity given also by the use of Vaia wood.
The ambitious project that Mr. Tarchini worked on for some time, provides a direct connection to the Mendrisio San Martino railway station with the aim of encouraging the use of public transport in order to reduce traffic, viability and pollution problems. Through a covered walkway, customers from northern Italy, Switzerland and other countries are able to easily access FoxTown from the railway.
The commitment to the environment also finds concrete expression in consumption efficiency and investments in green technologies. As Mr. Tarchini states, it has been built a second photovoltaic system on the roof of FoxTown, able to power the shopping centre 98% with the energy produced by its solar panels.
Furthermore, starting from November 2022, a heating plant fuelled by wood chips is operating, a natural fuel derived from wood waste, of which Ticino has an overproduction. The wood chips it is used to heat the over 70’000 square meters of surface are of the Factory Stores and some nearby companies. This allow not to use fossil fuels and to saves the emission of one million kilos of CO2 into the air annually.