Genoa – An eighteenth-century villa in Rivarolo in exchange for a rationalist architecture building in Viale Brigate Partigiane, a stone’s throw from the Levante Waterfront in full transformation. These are the two properties that could become the subject of an exchange between the Marquis Giacomo Cattaneo Adorno, owner of the Villa Pallavicini in Rivarolo, and the Municipality of Genoa, owner of the Palazzina Labò, an important example of rationalist architecture at La Foce. The actual negotiation between the two parties has not yet begun but the first steps have been taken. “We asked the Revenue Agency for an economic evaluation of the two properties to understand if the values are close or even equivalent, or not,” explains the municipal councilor for Heritage Stefano Garassino.
“We like the Valpolcevera town hall project for the use of Villa Pallavicini, even if it can still be refined and integrated – observes Garassino – And, since Cattaneo Adorno has expressed interest in the Labò building for a possible exchange, we asked an appraisal on the value of the two properties, which obviously will also take into account the interventions they need “.
Waiting for real estate valuations
At the origin of the story there is the request of the Valpolcevera municipality to the municipal council to acquire Villa Pallavicini with an exchange. The goal is the redevelopment of the building, which needs substantial renovations, to make it a location for decentralized offices and public services and a cultural and social aggregation center. Requests also supported by the six thousand signatures collected by “Friends of Villa Pallavicini in Rivarolo”, and from the placement of the villa in fifth place in Liguria among the “Places of the heart” of Fai (Fondo Ambiente Italiano). “Our request is that the exchange be closed with the acquisition of Villa Pallavicini by the Municipality within this year”, points out the president of the Valpolcevera municipality Federico Romeo. On the other side there is the building in Viale Brigate Partigiane, built between 1935 and 1937 on a project by the Genoese architect Mario Labò to house the San Pietro restaurant. Over the years the building, also known as the former Q8 building, has changed its intended use several times and has also undergone a partial demolition in the 1960s to allow for the construction of the ramp of the Sopraelevata.
The shipwrecked plans on the building
In 2018, the Bucci junta had decided to assign it to the Avis and Fidas sections to build the first Italian home of the blood donor there, but the operation then did not materialize due to various difficulties. And so, since they had arrived in the Municipality some expressions of interest in the purchase of the property, last February the administration had decided to put the building up for sale at the base price of 1 million and 586 thousand euros. But the race went deserted and the building remained in the municipality. “The Labò building is one of the properties that the Municipality has proposed to us for the exchange with Villa Pallavicini – explains Giacomo Cattaneo Adorno – I would have been even more interested in the market in Piazza dello Statuto, but in the meantime the administration has concluded another operation. As far as I am concerned, I am willing to sell Villa Pallavicini with an exchange, and to sell the football field free of charge which, being privately owned, cannot now access the CONI contributions ”. As for the possible destination of the Labò building: “I know that the functions hypothesized in the past were for offices and public services but – explains Cattaneo Adorno – I have never visited it and I do not have a project, because we are still in a very preliminary phase with the common”.
The building is subject to a precise architectural protection constraint, and its proximity to the Levante Waterfront area inevitably increases its interest. The possible new destinations are conditioned by the protection restrictions – the whole area is declared of considerable public interest -, and by the size and structure of the building. The municipal urban plan, however, admits various functions in that area, including accommodation facilities, hotels, residences, services for public use, offices, neighborhood businesses and medium-sized sales structures, private services, urban connective (excluding game rooms, betting, bingo and the like). “Before concluding any exchange concerning the Labò building, we will ask that the project of use be presented to us, because we want to know what will go there – explains the commissioner Garassino – Since it is a restricted building, the restructuring will obviously have to follow the indications of the Superintendency, and we would like the part that had been demolished to build the Sopraelevata to also be restored ”.
The relationship with the Waterfront
“But – concludes the commissioner – we will also ask for guarantees on the renovation times, which will have to go hand in hand with those of the Levante Waterfront. And if the exchange does not go through, we will evaluate whether to put the property up for sale again at a reduced price “. The decisive phases of the game will therefore open when the response from the Revenue Agency arrives. Meanwhile, Cattaneo Adorno also has another game open with the Municipality concerning the area he owns on the Vesima hill. The Bucci council recently approved an urban variant, proposed by the Marquis’s farm in order to carry out a complex project that involves the construction of new residences, the renovation of existing buildings and the recovery of agricultural land. And in the coming weeks the city council will have to pronounce the final verdict on the variant, which has already aroused much controversy.