State Archives of Turin

G.G.Raineri as Designers

The archive is housed in a building that was once a hospital for contagious diseases. The Opera pia "San Luigi Gonzaga" built it on architect Giuseppe Talucchi’s plan (1782 - 1863) who was able to functionally enrich cross eighteenth-century hospital type (infirmaries in the arms and the chapel in the center).


The work began in 1818, was accessible in 1843 and totally finished in 1867. The rapid advances in medicine, then, radically changed the hospital techniques, and the building was to finish his functions at the beginning of the new century.


The building is load-bearing masonry and vaults even in bricks with chains in sight inside. The roof was wood with a layer of brickwork tiles. It had its architectural value to the plasticity of the volumes, veri clear also for the deliberate lack of decorations, or orders (only a few column at the entrance), and the all-encompassing red coloration (bricks and tiles); in the inside stood out the unusual space of the naves and the dome - lantern.


The building was purchased by the City of Turin in 1925 who turned it into the State Archives, making brutal tampering inside and adding a long sleeve on the longitudinal axis of the cross.


The architectural task consisted, then, in returning the interior to its original state, retaining only the aforementioned long sleeve, (a large capacity, and not entirely against); and subsequently the insertion of all the plant apparatus and of the relevant storage to a modern archive.


The reuse is marked by the canon of reversibility, so all interventions are distinguishable from the pre-existence (even materially, since almost all modern entry is metal) .The offices, fully modern, are made without force in the attic volume of long sleeve. The naves are home to warehouses and converge towards the researchers hall , set up in the ex chapel of St. Louis. Special care (not only functional) has been devoted to this environment, sacredly heard as a place of encounter with the past.


Construction phases: in 1983 was prepared a rough suddividibile project into functional lots, in order to make the best use of the funding. The renovation began by the total re-roofing, and increased body static performance (up to 1500 kg / mc), by underpinning masonry and reinforcement of the vaults, which was followed by all the internal accommodations, subject peeling plaster, removing all the fixtures, and all the floors. The restructuring is therefore started from a low internal to rustic.


The building has an entire block of approx. (100x110) in north-western sector of the city. The building consists of three floors above ground and a basement of approx. 5,540 square meters for a total volume of 104,400 cubic meters. His receptivity concerning the documents storage is of 60 km of shelves, all closed in sliding racks compacted. The lots were contracted and recorded in accordance with the laws and regulations of the Ministry of Public Works. Were completed (February 2001) works for £ 35.610.000.000. So the cost per cubic meter is £ 340,000 approx. During the work the Archive has never ceased to function.


The building’s environmental impact (strong given its configuration and its urban positioning) has remained intact. Indoor modernization, with all facilities and relevant aids, gave new impetus to historical studies.


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