Premio d’Architettura ‘Ernesto Lusana’ 2012

Built during the fascist regime with its first nucleus completed in 1932, Latina is one of the largest provinces in central Italy. Despite its relatively young origin the city is neglecting the historic centre and the main square (Piazza del Popolo) is now a considered a roundabout with a parking area.

The main task the project was to turn the whole square and the streets leading to it into a large pedestrian area with the aim of stimulating a series of environmental and economic reactions that would turn the square into an attractive place for people.

Through a series of design choices the square has been subdivided into thematic areas in order to provide more intimate spaces. The versatility of the new square allows for different uses (performances, market, etc.) throughout the year.

The geometric pattern on the ground obtained through use of different materials, is reminiscent of Latina’s original geometric structure, which generates the contemporary structures in the middle of the new square. The walls contain the three thematic areas but also provide additional shade in the middle of the square, work as a focus point to the streets leading to the square and provide a background to a variety of additional functions.

Careful consideration of vegetation and planted areas has been made to generate a micro climate in the square to allow people to use this public space also during the warmer periods of the year.