La Fabbrica del Vapore, Via Giulio Procaccini, 4 – 20154 Milano
A bit of history, from 1899…
On 26 January 1899, in the area around via Messina (at the number 9) a company was founded, called Ditta Carminati, Toselli & C., dedicated to “construction, repair, sale of fixed and mobile materials for railways, tramways and alike”. In early 1907 Ditta Carminati, Toselli & C. was dismissed and, with the contribution of new members, the “Società Italiana Carminati Toselli” was constituted, committed to the construction of transport equipment. The company did not only change its name, but expanded further by purchasing new undeveloped land; within a few years, the new headquarters was occupying the entire block between the streets via Messina, Procaccini, Nono and Piazza Coriolano.
In the meanwhile, the production had no moments of rest and, between 1907 and 1920, the same years in which the construction of buildings on the new area had been completed, the first patents appeared. Only with the outbreak of the First World War the production of Carminati Toselli suffered slowdowns. At the end of the war, the Municipality directly assumed the management of the urban tram service. In this period, after a decline due to the war events, the Carminati Toselli, thanks to a steady growth of requests for tramcars, considerably increased its production. At the end of 1926, the Milan’s tram network had a development of 151 Km: 700 cars circulated every day, for a total of 327 million passengers. The peak of Carminati Toselli’s production toke about a decade. With the seizure of power by the fascist regime, in fact, the Company began a period of stalemate that, in just a short time, lead to a real crisis. In 1935 the Società Italiana Carminati Toselli was dissolved.
From that moment on, the buildings located in the area between via Messina, Procaccini, Nono and Piazza Coriolano were first rented and later sold to different companies conducting the most varied activities (textile industry and pharmaceutical industry, typography, trucking and other deposits). Each of these companies made interventions on buildings and, in order to adapt them to their needs, decidedly changed original appearance. One of the changes of greatest magnitude regards the sheds located in via Procaccini, already seriously damaged after a bombing of World War II, which were finally demolished.
In recent years, however, some of the buildings had been used for cultural events, fashion shows, and as a film set.
… till today
The project of the Fabbrica del Vapore (Steam Factory) was born from the desire to excite a center of youth culture production in the city of Milan. Among the eighties and nineties of the last century, the municipal administration had pursued an arrangement of the original buildings, able to safeguard the architectural basis (as a fine example of industrial architecture), also to allow the realization of a great center for artistic youth.
From the furbishing and remodeling of the disused industrial area, located in a central area of the city, a new center had developed where young people can experience ideas and creative skills in contact with professionals and experts coming from cultural production.
The different artistic and cultural activities are held for providing youth competence and professionalism. The goal is to combine culture and production, to give birth to actions involving artistic knowledge, entrepreneurial activities and distribution channels: a reality in which you can create individually but also have the possibility to relate with others for mutual enrichment and more effective proposals.
The Fabbrica del Vapore and the Milano Design Week
Active for all 12 months of the year, the Fabbrica del Vapore enlivens especially during the Milano Design Week, and it has been one of the most valuable site of all the Fuorisalone for-back. It is a location well known and visited by architects, designers and interior decorators and perceived as the forum in which the most innovative of all the Milano Design Week commercial and cultural appointments are held.
It is surely the space in which all visitors to the Milano Design Week stop over.
The Green Utopia Garden
Green Utopia is placed in the Sharing Design’s context, an exhibition by Milano Makers, and it includes a series of international exhibitions and events that take place mainly in the courtyard and in the so-called «Cathedral»’s spaces.
30,000 among architects, designers and interior decorators visited the 2014 edition, receiving a wide both online and offline communicative echo.
It has been unanimously considered the most interesting proposal of all the Milan Design Week 2014.
In the spaces of Fabbrica del Vapore will be built, for the second time, a Greencity. Real examples of the most innovative and concrete response to contemporary concerning sustainability for architecture, design and interior will be shown in 2,000 square meters, located in the most visited place of all the Fabbrica del Vapore: the entrance courtyard to the «Cathedral».