At the heart of Europe's fashion capital, Milan's Galleria Vittorio Emanuele is a year-round parade ground for the sartorial cognocenti. However, the city council has plans to enliven this already animated environment, staging catwalk shows, theatre and music. Arup is now working on plans to part glaze the Galleria's four 20m tall arched entrances to bring greater control over its internal climate. 'You don't want models getting goose bumps and catching cold in the middle of winter, ' notes Del Mese.
Proposals are for a glass 'curtain' suspended to within 3m to 4m of the ground. It would be louvered, allowing heat generated by the sun's rays passing through Galleria's glass vault and dome to be vented. The curtain would be retractable in summer.