Leonardo da Vinci's Laboratory in Gualchiere di Ramole Florence, Italy will be restored into a museum and be the headquarters of ITKI. The restoration has been agreed by the Mayor of Florence, the Mayor of Bagno Ripoli, IPOGEA and The Maria Nobrega Foundation.
The Leonardo da Vinci complex is one of the sole survivors of the numerous buildings scattered from the Middle Ages onwards along the banks of the Arno River. Active for more than five centuries with remarkably preserved architecture and plumbing, the structures form an important reference in the landscape of pre-industrial European archeology. Leonardo da Vinci’s drawings of the mills illustrate techniques used in the water mills and allow for the application to recent scientific knowledge about the Middle Ages to the Renaissance. The Leonardo da Vinci Museum recognizes the importance of the mills as part of the complete scientific study of his works. With the support of the museum, part of the restoration will be to recreate Leonardo Da Vinci’s Laboratory with his machines and research in a tower of the mill.
Ten years of perseverance and hard-work on the ‘Gualchiere di Ramole' project situated in Florence, Italy has brought it back to life with many exciting opportunities ahead. We would like to thank Col. Michael Carrington, Pietro Laureano Architect and President of Icomos Italia and Ipogea, Luciano Bartolini the former Mayor of Bagno a Ripoli and Dario Nardella the Mayor of Florence for many years of continued efforts to restore the Gualchiere di Ramole.
The Gualchiere di Ramole added significant value to Florence since the 14th century by providing clean hydraulic energy for wool processing and mills. All operation had been completely abandoned but thanks to public support and the Municipality of Florence, which owns the mill the application to restore the significant structures has been accepted. This opens up the possibility of a large participatory design process for the recovery of this historical monument building upon its strong local identity, as a symbol of sustainability and the link between the city and the Arno river.
The mills represent the advanced level of Florentine skill for the art of textiles. This high quality skill is still a source of pride in Tuscan towns. In the areas around the museum and park the mills will re-establish areas for quality workshops and stores. The new buildings and whole restoration will continue based on a manifesto of ecological architecture and a certificate of sustainability from UNESCO.