Giving new life to outdoor and shared space, encouraging its daily use, and offering better design of habitability and urban greenery.

These are the main objectives that the University of Milan Bicocca has set thanks to the redevelopment works that are affecting Piazza della Scienza, a pivotal structure of the Bicocca Campus, overlooked by the U1-Atlas, U2-Quantum, U3-Bios and U4-Tellus buildings.

The project, funded by the Lombardy Region for 1.9 million euros, focuses on singular valuable works and experimentation by professors and researchers in the square itself. Sought-after green essences and the introduction of sensors for heat island assessment are just some of the interventions planned by the project.

Plants and shrubs have been selected jointly with professors from Università degli studi di Milano-Bicocca and will also be the subject of an interdisciplinary biodiversity assessment promoted by the green installations that will be built, allowing data to be collected on the heat island and promoting understanding of the action of plants on environmental and human health.

The plaza is one of MUSA’s living labs: in the planning phase, about 25 researchers, doctoral students and faculty from two departments (Biotechnology and Biosciences & Environmental and Earth Sciences) helped set up an experiment involving the installation of about 50 sensors aimed at monitoring numerous parameters, such as plaza temperature, air quality, noise impact of human activities and biomonitoring (pollinators and insects). Work on the Square began in June 2023 and is proceeding with the layout of the new pavement and the ponds that will house the plant species that will increase the green area of the square by 40 percent (see video below).

The strategy for moving forward with the work is based on dividing the area into two distinct zones, which “cut” the plaza in half: building zone U1-Atlas and U2-Quantum, which is affected by the work first, and followed by building zone U3-Bios and U4-Tellus.

On the U1 – U2 front, the work is proceeding as per the schedule shared with the University, and the first 3,000 square meters of final paving – consisting of lucerna stone blocks surrounded by granite cornices – have already been laid.