Fabrica Architecture
City of stone This a competition for the regeneration of the Latomie of Siracusa as an oppurtunity to re-connect the quarries as a topographical cityscape to the sea. This is achieved by using the inherent aesthetic and technical qualities of the local limestone, in a contemporary and innovative way that is appropriate to the Siracusa of today and the future.
HISTORY The word Latomie is derived from (litos=stone and temnos=cut), and form the antique limestone quarries from which the Greeks quarried the stone to construct their temples, roads and defensive walls. With their varied past the Latomie have been used for many different purposes, such as prisons, places of burial, allotments and gardens In the course of the centuries, the action of erosion and of disintegration of the limestone due rainwater and earthquakes has resulted in the collapse of much of the roof and vaults which covered the labyrinth of caves and voids below ground. This has given one the opportunity of viewing spectacular cavities which result from this type of mining and given rise to the Latomie which we can see today. Today they have been transformed into luxuriant and delightfulgardens which house rich vegetation and create suggestive panoramas both internally and externally, still as strong and imposing on the topography of modern day Siracusa as they were two thousand years ago.
PROPOSAL Our proposal for the Latomie is considered at two scales; firstly at the scale of the whole city and its connections/position within Siracusa; and then also at a local building level for the proposal of the civic centre /museum. At a city level the whole site is considered, enhancing and reinforcing its boundaries whilst ensuring that the existing complex of the Latomie is preserved.
Protection, preservation and containment are key features of the design. A continuous ribbon of stone envelops the site and is conceived as a sculptural element, linking and protecting the oasis of the Latomie and highlighting what is preserved. The stone ribbon adheres to the site perimeter, folding and ramping to suit the topographical features, adapting to the specific conditions of protecting, concealing, revealing and framing views. This provides a rich and secure route, enriching the visitor’s perception of the site and its relationship to the city, bringing a dynamic movement to the pedestrian streetscape, and visual connections into the Latomie and the head of the bay of Siracusa beyond. Raised viewing platforms punctuate the journey, enabling the opportunity to pause and contemplate.
The museum/civic centre is viewed as a place that will once again become the centre of the community for Siracusa. Acting as a magnet for the city’s people it encourages local interaction and once again offers local focus to a once forgotten area. The entrances are conceived as gentle ramped landscapes, which are carved into the physical topography and every visitor commences their journey into the museum below ground, not unlike one would have done as a miner within the caves.
Moving away from the traditional approach of sequential rooms, the museum is thought of as an open, serendipitous space. The design strives to be respectful of its location and the varied spaces formed are a reflection the history and morphology of the site. It allows each visitor to discover and explore, unexpected journeys and visual connections can happen and the resulting experience is allowed to be different for all. The museum is composed of a cluster of stone pillars, which form organisational, and orientation points within the Centre.
As a reinterpretation of the room and pillar method of mining of the original ancient quarries, the hollow pillars allow light to be filtered deep into the building, and the delightful internal spaces contained within, washed with natural light, house the permanent exhibition spaces for the museum. The building is composed of 3 horizontal stone strata which follow the make up and function of the museum, showcasing the varied methods of working stone through cutting, crafting, carving and polishing, allowing the visitors to connect with the external experience of visiting the Latomie with the internal environment of the building. The 3 strata are composed as follows: • The lower portion being the carved element of rock, excavated ground as a solid base. • The middle portion is the crafted/sculpted element which fi lters the light deep into the entrance hall of the museum, formed of layered rock • The upper portion is a machined stone section, which is polished and honed to form a smooth finish.
By reconnecting the Latomie to the city and the sea the rich history and intriguing beauty of the Latomie quarries is once again brought into focus. Our proposal offers the opportunity to finally celebrate, remember, and contemplate how fundamental the quarries of the Latomie were, and still are, to development of Siracusa
Siracusa Competition

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Fabrica Architecture
City of stone This a competition for the regeneration of the Latomie of Siracusa as an oppurtunity to re-connect the quarries as a topographical cityscape to the sea. This is achieved by using the inherent aesthetic and technical qualities of the local limestone, in a contemporary and innovative way that is appropriate to the Siracusa of today and the future. HISTORY The word Latomie is derived from (litos=stone and temnos=cut), and form the antique limestone quarries from which the Greeks quarried the stone to construct their temples, roads and defensive walls. With their varied past the Latomie have been used for many different purposes, such as prisons, places of burial, allotments and gardens In the course of the centuries, the action of erosion and of disintegration of the limestone due rainwater and earthquakes has resulted in the collapse of much of the roof and vaults which covered the labyrinth of caves and voids below ground. This has given one the opportunity of viewing spectacular cavities which result from this type of mining and given rise to the Latomie which we can see today. Today they have been transformed into luxuriant and delightfulgardens which house rich vegetation and create suggestive panoramas both internally and externally, still as strong and imposing on the topography of modern day Siracusa as they were two thousand years ago.
PROPOSAL Our proposal for the Latomie is considered at two scales; firstly at the scale of the whole city and its connections/position within Siracusa; and then also at a local building level for the proposal of the civic centre /museum. At a city level the whole site is considered, enhancing and reinforcing its boundaries whilst ensuring that the existing complex of the Latomie is preserved.
Protection, preservation and containment are key features of the design. A continuous ribbon of stone envelops the site and is conceived as a sculptural element, linking and protecting the oasis of the Latomie and highlighting what is preserved. The stone ribbon adheres to the site perimeter, folding and ramping to suit the topographical features, adapting to the specific conditions of protecting, concealing, revealing and framing views. This provides a rich and secure route, enriching the visitor’s perception of the site and its relationship to the city, bringing a dynamic movement to the pedestrian streetscape, and visual connections into the Latomie and the head of the bay of Siracusa beyond. Raised viewing platforms punctuate the journey, enabling the opportunity to pause and contemplate.
The museum/civic centre is viewed as a place that will once again become the centre of the community for Siracusa. Acting as a magnet for the city’s people it encourages local interaction and once again offers local focus to a once forgotten area. The entrances are conceived as gentle ramped landscapes, which are carved into the physical topography and every visitor commences their journey into the museum below ground, not unlike one would have done as a miner within the caves. Moving away from the traditional approach of sequential rooms, the museum is thought of as an open, serendipitous space. The design strives to be respectful of its location and the varied spaces formed are a reflection the history and morphology of the site. It allows each visitor to discover and explore, unexpected journeys and visual connections can happen and the resulting experience is allowed to be different for all. The museum is composed of a cluster of stone pillars, which form organisational, and orientation points within the Centre. As a reinterpretation of the room and pillar method of mining of the original ancient quarries, the hollow pillars allow light to be filtered deep into the building, and the delightful internal spaces contained within, washed with natural light, house the permanent exhibition spaces for the museum. The building is composed of 3 horizontal stone strata which follow the make up and function of the museum, showcasing the varied methods of working stone through cutting, crafting, carving and polishing, allowing the visitors to connect with the external experience of visiting the Latomie with the internal environment of the building. The 3 strata are composed as follows: • The lower portion being the carved element of rock, excavated ground as a solid base. • The middle portion is the crafted/sculpted element which fi lters the light deep into the entrance hall of the museum, formed of layered rock • The upper portion is a machined stone section, which is polished and honed to form a smooth finish. By reconnecting the Latomie to the city and the sea the rich history and intriguing beauty of the Latomie quarries is once again brought into focus. Our proposal offers the opportunity to finally celebrate, remember, and contemplate how fundamental the quarries of the Latomie were, and still are, to development of Siracusa
Siracusa Competition
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Fabrica Architecture
City of stone This a competition for the regeneration of the Latomie of Siracusa as an oppurtunity to re-connect the quarries as a topographical cityscape to the sea. This is achieved by using the inherent aesthetic and technical qualities of the local limestone, in a contemporary and innovative way that is appropriate to the Siracusa of today and the future. HISTORY The word Latomie is derived from (litos=stone and temnos=cut), and form the antique limestone quarries from which the Greeks quarried the stone to construct their temples, roads and defensive walls. With their varied past the Latomie have been used for many different purposes, such as prisons, places of burial, allotments and gardens In the course of the centuries, the action of erosion and of disintegration of the limestone due rainwater and earthquakes has resulted in the collapse of much of the roof and vaults which covered the labyrinth of caves and voids below ground. This has given one the opportunity of viewing spectacular cavities which result from this type of mining and given rise to the Latomie which we can see today. Today they have been transformed into luxuriant and delightfulgardens which house rich vegetation and create suggestive panoramas both internally and externally, still as strong and imposing on the topography of modern day Siracusa as they were two thousand years ago.
PROPOSAL Our proposal for the Latomie is considered at two scales; firstly at the scale of the whole city and its connections/position within Siracusa; and then also at a local building level for the proposal of the civic centre /museum. At a city level the whole site is considered, enhancing and reinforcing its boundaries whilst ensuring that the existing complex of the Latomie is preserved. Protection, preservation and containment are key features of the design. A continuous ribbon of stone envelops the site and is conceived as a sculptural element, linking and protecting the oasis of the Latomie and highlighting what is preserved. The stone ribbon adheres to the site perimeter, folding and ramping to suit the topographical features, adapting to the specific conditions of protecting, concealing, revealing and framing views. This provides a rich and secure route, enriching the visitor’s perception of the site and its relationship to the city, bringing a dynamic movement to the pedestrian streetscape, and visual connections into the Latomie and the head of the bay of Siracusa beyond. Raised viewing platforms punctuate the journey, enabling the opportunity to pause and contemplate. The museum/civic centre is viewed as a place that will once again become the centre of the community for Siracusa. Acting as a magnet for the city’s people it encourages local interaction and once again offers local focus to a once forgotten area. The entrances are conceived as gentle ramped landscapes, which are carved into the physical topography and every visitor commences their journey into the museum below ground, not unlike one would have done as a miner within the caves. Moving away from the traditional approach of sequential rooms, the museum is thought of as an open, serendipitous space. The design strives to be respectful of its location and the varied spaces formed are a reflection the history and morphology of the site. It allows each visitor to discover and explore, unexpected journeys and visual connections can happen and the resulting experience is allowed to be different for all. The museum is composed of a cluster of stone pillars, which form organisational, and orientation points within the Centre. As a reinterpretation of the room and pillar method of mining of the original ancient quarries, the hollow pillars allow light to be filtered deep into the building, and the delightful internal spaces contained within, washed with natural light, house the permanent exhibition spaces for the museum. The building is composed of 3 horizontal stone strata which follow the make up and function of the museum, showcasing the varied methods of working stone through cutting, crafting, carving and polishing, allowing the visitors to connect with the external experience of visiting the Latomie with the internal environment of the building. The 3 strata are composed as follows: • The lower portion being the carved element of rock, excavated ground as a solid base. • The middle portion is the crafted/sculpted element which fi lters the light deep into the entrance hall of the museum, formed of layered rock • The upper portion is a machined stone section, which is polished and honed to form a smooth finish. By reconnecting the Latomie to the city and the sea the rich history and intriguing beauty of the Latomie quarries is once again brought into focus. Our proposal offers the opportunity to finally celebrate, remember, and contemplate how fundamental the quarries of the Latomie were, and still are, to development of Siracusa
Siracusa Competition
Siracusa Competition
Fabrica Architecture
City of stone This a competition for the regeneration of the Latomie of Siracusa as an oppurtunity to re-connect the quarries as a topographical cityscape to the sea. This is achieved by using the inherent aesthetic and technical qualities of the local limestone, in a contemporary and innovative way that is appropriate to the Siracusa of today and the future. HISTORY The word Latomie is derived from (litos=stone and temnos=cut), and form the antique limestone quarries from which the Greeks quarried the stone to construct their temples, roads and defensive walls. With their varied past the Latomie have been used for many different purposes, such as prisons, places of burial, allotments and gardens In the course of the centuries, the action of erosion and of disintegration of the limestone due rainwater and earthquakes has resulted in the collapse of much of the roof and vaults which covered the labyrinth of caves and voids below ground. This has given one the opportunity of viewing spectacular cavities which result from this type of mining and given rise to the Latomie which we can see today. Today they have been transformed into luxuriant and delightfulgardens which house rich vegetation and create suggestive panoramas both internally and externally, still as strong and imposing on the topography of modern day Siracusa as they were two thousand years ago.
PROPOSAL Our proposal for the Latomie is considered at two scales; firstly at the scale of the whole city and its connections/position within Siracusa; and then also at a local building level for the proposal of the civic centre /museum. At a city level the whole site is considered, enhancing and reinforcing its boundaries whilst ensuring that the existing complex of the Latomie is preserved. Protection, preservation and containment are key features of the design. A continuous ribbon of stone envelops the site and is conceived as a sculptural element, linking and protecting the oasis of the Latomie and highlighting what is preserved. The stone ribbon adheres to the site perimeter, folding and ramping to suit the topographical features, adapting to the specific conditions of protecting, concealing, revealing and framing views. This provides a rich and secure route, enriching the visitor’s perception of the site and its relationship to the city, bringing a dynamic movement to the pedestrian streetscape, and visual connections into the Latomie and the head of the bay of Siracusa beyond. Raised viewing platforms punctuate the journey, enabling the opportunity to pause and contemplate. The museum/civic centre is viewed as a place that will once again become the centre of the community for Siracusa. Acting as a magnet for the city’s people it encourages local interaction and once again offers local focus to a once forgotten area. The entrances are conceived as gentle ramped landscapes, which are carved into the physical topography and every visitor commences their journey into the museum below ground, not unlike one would have done as a miner within the caves. Moving away from the traditional approach of sequential rooms, the museum is thought of as an open, serendipitous space. The design strives to be respectful of its location and the varied spaces formed are a reflection the history and morphology of the site. It allows each visitor to discover and explore, unexpected journeys and visual connections can happen and the resulting experience is allowed to be different for all. The museum is composed of a cluster of stone pillars, which form organisational, and orientation points within the Centre. As a reinterpretation of the room and pillar method of mining of the original ancient quarries, the hollow pillars allow light to be filtered deep into the building, and the delightful internal spaces contained within, washed with natural light, house the permanent exhibition spaces for the museum. The building is composed of 3 horizontal stone strata which follow the make up and function of the museum, showcasing the varied methods of working stone through cutting, crafting, carving and polishing, allowing the visitors to connect with the external experience of visiting the Latomie with the internal environment of the building. The 3 strata are composed as follows: • The lower portion being the carved element of rock, excavated ground as a solid base. • The middle portion is the crafted/sculpted element which fi lters the light deep into the entrance hall of the museum, formed of layered rock • The upper portion is a machined stone section, which is polished and honed to form a smooth finish. By reconnecting the Latomie to the city and the sea the rich history and intriguing beauty of the Latomie quarries is once again brought into focus. Our proposal offers the opportunity to finally celebrate, remember, and contemplate how fundamental the quarries of the Latomie were, and still are, to development of Siracusa
Siracusa Competition
City of stone This a competition for the regeneration of the Latomie of Siracusa as an oppurtunity to re-connect the quarries as a topographical cityscape to the sea. This is achieved by using the inherent aesthetic and technical qualities of the local limestone, in a contemporary and innovative way that is appropriate to the Siracusa of today and the future. HISTORY The word Latomie is derived from (litos=stone and temnos=cut), and form the antique limestone quarries from which the Greeks quarried the stone to construct their temples, roads and defensive walls. With their varied past the Latomie have been used for many different purposes, such as prisons, places of burial, allotments and gardens In the course of the centuries, the action of erosion and of disintegration of the limestone due rainwater and earthquakes has resulted in the collapse of much of the roof and vaults which covered the labyrinth of caves and voids below ground. This has given one the opportunity of viewing spectacular cavities which result from this type of mining and given rise to the Latomie which we can see today. Today they have been transformed into luxuriant and delightfulgardens which house rich vegetation and create suggestive panoramas both internally and externally, still as strong and imposing on the topography of modern day Siracusa as they were two thousand years ago.
PROPOSAL Our proposal for the Latomie is considered at two scales; firstly at the scale of the whole city and its connections/position within Siracusa; and then also at a local building level for the proposal of the civic centre /museum. At a city level the whole site is considered, enhancing and reinforcing its boundaries whilst ensuring that the existing complex of the Latomie is preserved. Protection, preservation and containment are key features of the design. A continuous ribbon of stone envelops the site and is conceived as a sculptural element, linking and protecting the oasis of the Latomie and highlighting what is preserved. The stone ribbon adheres to the site perimeter, folding and ramping to suit the topographical features, adapting to the specific conditions of protecting, concealing, revealing and framing views. This provides a rich and secure route, enriching the visitor’s perception of the site and its relationship to the city, bringing a dynamic movement to the pedestrian streetscape, and visual connections into the Latomie and the head of the bay of Siracusa beyond. Raised viewing platforms punctuate the journey, enabling the opportunity to pause and contemplate. The museum/civic centre is viewed as a place that will once again become the centre of the community for Siracusa. Acting as a magnet for the city’s people it encourages local interaction and once again offers local focus to a once forgotten area. The entrances are conceived as gentle ramped landscapes, which are carved into the physical topography and every visitor commences their journey into the museum below ground, not unlike one would have done as a miner within the caves. Moving away from the traditional approach of sequential rooms, the museum is thought of as an open, serendipitous space. The design strives to be respectful of its location and the varied spaces formed are a reflection the history and morphology of the site. It allows each visitor to discover and explore, unexpected journeys and visual connections can happen and the resulting experience is allowed to be different for all. The museum is composed of a cluster of stone pillars, which form organisational, and orientation points within the Centre. As a reinterpretation of the room and pillar method of mining of the original ancient quarries, the hollow pillars allow light to be filtered deep into the building, and the delightful internal spaces contained within, washed with natural light, house the permanent exhibition spaces for the museum. The building is composed of 3 horizontal stone strata which follow the make up and function of the museum, showcasing the varied methods of working stone through cutting, crafting, carving and polishing, allowing the visitors to connect with the external experience of visiting the Latomie with the internal environment of the building. The 3 strata are composed as follows: • The lower portion being the carved element of rock, excavated ground as a solid base. • The middle portion is the crafted/sculpted element which fi lters the light deep into the entrance hall of the museum, formed of layered rock • The upper portion is a machined stone section, which is polished and honed to form a smooth finish. By reconnecting the Latomie to the city and the sea the rich history and intriguing beauty of the Latomie quarries is once again brought into focus. Our proposal offers the opportunity to finally celebrate, remember, and contemplate how fundamental the quarries of the Latomie were, and still are, to development of Siracusa
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