Spaces for Civic Use, Thermal baths in historic towns of Tuscany

Spaces for Civic Use Thermal baths in historic towns of Tuscany

Terme Via Ricci, 1:20 model view

Under the title Spaces for Civic Use, the unit this year developed architectural proposals for civic thermal baths in historic towns in the province of Siena, Tuscany. The unit then walked 100 km through the landscape of Tuscany in search of thermal waters known for centuries like Bagno Vignoni or in the discovery of forgotten springs. Slowly we explored the territory identifying places where thermal water could be used as a public resource of a community. Sites were identified in historic towns in the Val d’Orcia: Siena, Lucignano d’Asso, Bagno Vignoni, Pienza and Montepulciano. Buildings for thermal baths were designed, studying in depth the nature of public realms for bathing, their character, atmosphere and comfort as well as their civic presence. The proposals find their origin in a profound comprehension and careful description of the landscape and its constructions. Precedent and the study of traditional methods of construction are reinterpreted, utilising contemporary techniques of realisation, with the intention of developing proposals that become part of the historical context where they belong. The students have developed, through drawing and 1:1 material samples, construction and material strategies aiming at a spatial and construction clarity that result in an architecture of inner calmness and simplicity.


Undergraduate studio
University of East London
Project title: Spaces for Civic Use, Thermal baths in historic towns of Tuscany
Location: Siena, Italy
Year: 2010
Coordinators and tutors: Aurora Armental Ruiz & Stefano Ciurlo Walker

Students: Douglas Ahem, Abul Bashir,Christopher Bishop, Michael Denyer, Ruta Didelyte, Khalid Egal, Hamed Haji Faraji, Matthew McAleese, Khulood Nasaif, Thasmia Reza, Kristin Ulrikke Ronnestad, Loucas Stephanides, Maria Ourania Zacharopoulou, Farrokh Aman, Michalis Anastasiou, Stavroula-Davidia Antoniou, Charbel Chagoury, Jhonnatan Jaramillo, Fiona Magar, Hironobu Mizugai, Sanae Mizushima, Riichiro Sakashita, Rory Saunders, Marina Shileva, Bhavika Varsani

Visiting critics:

Frank Furrer, Nicholas Lobo Brennan,Michele Roelofsma, Mark Hayduk, Christoph Hadrys, Joseph Little, Ignacio López Alonso, Jan Liebe, Ferrán Grau Valldosera, Peter Beardsell, Sina Zekavat, Tsuyoshi Wada, Marco Vidotto

Thanks to:

Regione Toscana, Archivio Cartografico Generale, Provincia di Siena, Facoltà di Architettura – Universita degli Study di Firenze, Lorenzo Simonelli, Etienne Clement, Mark Hayduk and Marco Vidotto