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Mercato Centrale

In 2021, the new Mercato Centrale (Central Market) in Milan was opened to the public after a long emergency period caused by the Covid pandemic. This high-level refurbishment is located in the west wing of the city’s Central Station and was originally drafted in 1912 and officially used for the first time in 1935.
Designed and supervised by TA -Torsello Architettura, the renovation explored an unusual way of creating a market: an inheritance based on the regeneration of an existing structure. The different businesses are located one after the other. So, the visitor moves from flower arrangements to hot bread and from coffee and sfogliatella pastries to main dishes.

The linear space’s twin-levels, the preservation of signs of the building's use and transformations, its system of horizontal and vertical connections, and light and time are just some of the themes around which the architect Torsello developed the project. Particular importance was also given to the materials used - a selection of iron and chestnut wood - which draw new beauty and meanings from the passage of time. In fact, the walls are conceived as pages from an ongoing diary - an industrial-style canvas, filled with sketches, words and colourful brushstrokes that emphasize how stratification is the law of contemporary city life. For this rich environment, the architect, Torsello, paid great attention to the modulation of the lighting. He chose iGuzzini luminaires for both the lighting scenario in the outdoor spaces on the terraces where mainly pendant Laser luminaires have been mounted on low-voltage tracks, and inside where iGuzzini luminaires are used in the area reserved for the public.

Torsello chose dramatic general lighting, calibrated at a colour temperature of 3000 K to highlight the textures of the surfaces. This was achieved in most cases using a grazing effect created by Linealuce mini 47 luminaires. This base is then overlaid by different types of accent lighting created by iPro spotlights installed directly on the reinforced concrete ceiling or by Palco spotlights mounted on long continuous lines of mains voltage tracks. The pendant Laser luminaire is also a recurring element above several counters. The café area, on the other hand, features a specially designed pendant product consisting of a methacrylate tube illuminated by a Palco LV 16° optic. A black finish was chosen for the luminaires to ensure they blend into the ceiling that has been deliberately left dark to minimize the systems’ sensation of weight.

The spaces on the upper floor are designed for people who stay longer. A lounge-like mood has therefore been created with deep wall niches lit by Palco LV luminaires and general lighting created by profile-mounted Underscores and LInealuce mini 47 luminaires for grazing effects. 

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  • Year
  • Client
    Mercato Centrale Holding
    Grandi Stazioni Retail
  • Architectural project:
    TA Architettura - Alberto Torsello
  • Lighting project:
    TA Architettura - Alberto Torsello
  • Photographer
    Alessandra Chemollo