Snøhetta propose mountain-top museum quarter in Italy

Snøhetta has designed a mountain-top museum quarter in northern Italy for the famous prehistoric mummy of Ötzi the Iceman.

Set atop the Virgolo/Virgl mountain, the new Museum Quarter in Bolzano would overlook the South Tyrolean capital, providing panoramic views of the city and its mountainscape.

Snøhetta also designed the planned Bolzano cable car structure, which will link the Museum Quarter to the city of Bolzano.

The proposal is an extension of Snøhetta’s ongoing project with Signa Group.

“The new Museum Quarter will create a synthesis of city and nature, of history and future, of building and landscape, of culture, leisure and knowledge,” said Snøhetta founding partner Kjetil Trædal Thorsen.

“Visitors can meet Ötzi the Iceman on top of the Virgl mountain, a place with a historic atmosphere. In addition, the new Virgl cable car system and the Museum Quarter will provide spaces of cultural significance and recreational value next to the city centre of Bolzano.”

New Museum Quarter

The new attraction would house the South Tyrol Museum of Archaeology and the Municipal Museum of Bolzano, as well Ötzi the Iceman.

In Snøhetta’s proposal, the Museum Quarter is imagined as an elongated structure projecting from the mountain. It would connect to the ring-shaped cable car station via a rooftop plaza, which would be used for open-air markets, concerts, and more.

Visitors would enter the museums through an open space on the roof and a joint foyer. The surrounding landscape will be developed for leisure activities, such as walking, hiking or biking.

“Through the planned cable car structure and the new Museum Quarter, the Virgl mountain will serve as a cultural and recreational area for the people and visitors of Bolzano,” Snøhetta stated.

“The new Museum Quarter will establish a new landmark for Bolzano and reinforce the city’s international significance as a cultural destination.”

Snøhetta also recently completed a pair of wooden Outdoor Care Retreats at two Norwegian hospitals, and a crystal workshop for Swarovski in Austria.

Elsewhere in northern Italy, coffee company Lavazza has opened a coffee museum in Turin, which tells the story of Lavazza and the coffee production chain, and includes a high-tech, interactive Espresso cup.

Image: Snøhetta

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