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Pictures of a Grand Ensemble

November 18, 2010

According to the definition of the french Wikipedia Grand ensebles are

des ensembles de logement collectif, souvent en nombre important (plusieurs centaines à plusieurs milliers de logements), construits entre le milieu des années 1950 et le milieu des années 1970, marqués par un urbanisme de barres et de tours inspiré des préceptes de l’architecture moderne.

Photographer Marco Blasich took a few pictures in the Quartiere Missaglia, a large housing estate built by the Istituto autonomo case popolari di Milano IACPM  (Social Housing Public Agency) in 1971. This rather anonymous project, based on a 1966 masterplan by Nizzoli Architettura, gives the opportunity of some reflections regarding an old-fashioned approach to housing demand that in some cases still provide an excellent quality of life at affordable prices, in a very sustainable way.

Pedestrian mobility, high level of services, flexible floorplans, well designed and carefully mantained green areas, quick connection to different public transport means (to the other parts of the city) and to the highway. A building made with precast concrete slab (Plattenbau) that supports since 40 years a sustainable community and where my family and I are very happy to live.

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