Belvedere and shelter for mountaineers in the Ziro Tower
The Ziro Tower is a medieval building in front of Ravello, located in the ancient center of Amalfi. The first plant was of longobardian era, part of the defensive system of the Italian coast.
The main and severe architecture of this bulwark has a circular plan completed by a walkway patrol in stone characterized by a wiggly shape.
In the Fifteenth this building become sadly famous because, at his inner, Giovanna d’Aragona, duchess of Amalfi , widow of the duke Alfonso Piccolomini and her three daughters were here enclosed and then fiercely executed. She was accused to get a morganatic marriage with her secretary.
The sad story inspired many dramaturgical pieces written by Matteo Bandello and Felix Lope de Vega.
Thanks to its substantial inaccessibility, the architectural structure of the building has partially kept the same till the fifties’, when, a great crash, caused by a lightning, modified its features changing it into an ancient ruin of that severe and fantastic landscape which had impressed Wagner so much.
Recently the long path witch from the Pontenone borough – by foot or by mule shoulder – leads to the tower in a wood, various and intact landscape together with the presence of an impressive and steep stone cliff, has changed the monument into the basis for the site of climbing of the Mountain Community of the Amalfitan Coast.
The idea to restore it using only 80000 € has given many conceptual problems that I have thought to solve aiming at a new usage destination.
I have imagined to consolidate the building at a ruin state using the only covered open space which is intact into the basement as a shelter and rest place for mountaineers.
Here I have used light colors for the walls and raw concrete for the floors. Then, with few cutting into the score walls I have designed a steep metallic stair that looks like a snake with a lighting body, a path that from the inner changes into external for all tourists and mountaineers who wants to join a unique landscape from an unexpected point.
The structure is bolted to grant the reversibility of the project and the neapolitan railing balustrade shaped is rich of little rounded light.
This metallic trellis enforces and closes the tower bodies finding space between the intact parts made by vaults and attics covered by chestnut trunks painted in white varnish.
The effect is of a great contrast between the daub graffiti, the white abstract, the steel reflection, the blue of the sea and the violent colors of the Mediterranean light.