A new eco mall will double the size of Turin's Eataly From green cars to sustainable food to bio-clothes
By Emanuela Minucci
Oscar Farinetti [the founder of Eataly] doesn't stop. And stays true to his ideas. Notwithstanding the success he is having with the Eataly brand worldwide, he has chosen Turin, his first love, to try out a new concept that cannot be more aligned with these times of economic and environmental concerns.
He is planning a new complex, the first "Green Retail Park" in the world, right next to the Carpano building in the Lingotto area, where he started off in 2007 with his first mix of thematic restaurants and the sales of products that until then people could only find at the Salone del Gusto [the yearly Slow Food fair].
And the visions of the two "Eataly"'s are closely aligned.
The new complex will host retail activities and services that in their production/creation, distribution and sales are driven by a vision of eco-sustainability and social responsibility.
Designed by Negozio Blu Architetti Associati, the 20,000 sq mt spaces are all dedicated to green shopping: from food to clothing to cars. Everything in this bio-cathedral will be "good, clean and fair" [The Slow Food motto].
A green environment...
The building will be constructed with sustainable technologies and materials. [...] The south facing facade will use natural screening and shading, as well as plant walls, and the roof will be covered with grass and plants—one of the many actions to reduce the building's environmental impact. The plants will reduce of cooling needs and the associated heat island effect, help filter the particulate pollution in our urban air, and dampen urban street noise. "We will use a range of sustainable technologies, materials and architectural interventions, including solar panels," explains the architect Cristiana Catino.
... with green products and services
The space will host stores that sell sustainable clothing and shoes, service entities specialized in renewable energy, and companies focused on bio-construction. Also on sale will be products for the garden and the biological vegetable garden, food and biological cosmetics, and sustainable furniture and household products. There will be a quality restaurant, and a specialized wellbeing center. One can even buy a green scooter or car. The heart of the space will host an eco assistance zone, where people can go to for advice on how to save energy in their homes, how to install solar panels, or how they can have a meaningful environmental impact in their day-to-day activities.
I am not sure whether it is the first green retail park in the world, probably not, and I hope that "Green Retail Park" is just a working title, but knowing Farinetti and what he has achieved with Eataly, we can expect it to have a big impact, and not just in Turin.
Mark Vanderbeeken is a senior partner at Experientia, an international experience design consultancy, based in Turin, Italy. He is also the author of the successful experience design blog Putting People First. Mark is a specialist in visioning, identity development and strategic communications and worked in Italy, Denmark, the USA and Belgium. He was communications manager of Interaction Design Institute Ivrea, European communications coordinator for the World Wide Fund for Nature (or WWF), marketing director of Gwathmey Siegel & Associates Architects (USA) and chief press officer of Antwerp 93, Cultural Capital of Europe (Belgium).