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Castelmola Community Interface

Part 2 Project 2004
Robert Labrom
Robin Farmer
University of Greenwich | UK
The design proposal reconfigures the main pedestrian entry to Castelmola, a beautiful and currently isolated hillside town in Sicily. By redefining the pedestrian gateway multiple routes are allowed to converge. These connect over and around the building’s exterior walkways and roofscapes which lead to the main piazza above. The proposal allows for multiple year-round uses; the fashion/textile centre facilitates a college during term-time, incorporating locals, tourists and businesses that also inhabit this space during vacation periods. The mayor and local planners have taken great interest in the proposal and the project is currently exhibited in Castelmola and the surrounding areas.
Robert Labrom
Robin Farmer

The quality of Robert’s work exists in its translation of a difficult site - a complex terrain, an understated town entry, a confused network of paths, a disjointed parking surface and a plethora of programmatic activity – into a coherent proposal of visual subtlety and programmatic significance for the town.

In the early meetings with the mayor and town planners Robert recognised the importance of working with the local activities and developed a proposal to reactivate the area year-round. The mixed programs and variety of potential users seem to merge seamlessly with his semi-porous system of overlapping volumes, terraces, ramps and stairs. Parallel to the accretive nature of the surrounding buildingscapes and landscapes, Robert proposes an additive spatial system which is adaptable, flexible and scalable to its external surroundings and internal activities. The attention to comprehensive detail is rendered beautifully in that the project maintains a separate and contemporary identity while still managing a contextualisation which is nestled into the surrounding site.

His work is currently on exhibition in Castelomola and has prompted the mayor to initiate a collaborative planning study into the potential growth of the town. As a scheme and site proposal favoured by the municipality, conversations of project realisation surround the proposal.


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