Having committed to investing more than EUR 600 million in the region, SIGNA is the largest private investor in the history of South Tyrol. The new bus station, a precondition for the construction of the WaltherPark, developing the empty space on Südtiroler Strasse, the Gries’Village housing project, transport infrastructure and the cable car project including museum complex on the Virgl hill are the main focuses of SIGNA’s work.
2019 is the year in which the upturn for Bolzano really gathers pace: following years of preparation, the positive outcome of a referendum in 2016, much technical and administrative fine tuning and construction of the new bus station, the stage is finally set for work to start on WaltherPark. This multi-use property, which includes a shopping centre, modern city hotel, high-quality apartments and offices at the gateway to the centre of Bolzano, will breathe fresh life into the South Tyrolean capital. Construction work will start in April 2019 with the demolition of the now defunct bus station and the former Hotel Alpi.
The SIGNA team is also on active duty at a number of other construction sites in the city: the gap opposite the Alpi on Südtiroler Strasse has now almost been filled after decades of inactivity; and the construction of apartments for the Gries’Village development on Grieser Platz is progressing at pace – the first residents are due to move into their new homes this summer. Gries’Village is synonymous with a new kind of living. In all, around 120 high-end new-build apartments are under construction on a 1.1 hectare plot in one of the most popular residential districts in Bozen. The properties, built to the Klimahaus A Nature energy-efficiency standard and made from eco-friendly materials, are highly insulated against ambient noise and heat loss, and feature footfall sound insulation. All apartments come with an intelligent Domotik system which automatically regulates lighting, blinds and heating. Another point in the development’s favour is the security that the Gries’Village offers. An integrated video intercom, central locking system and infrastructure for retrofitting alarm systems add to the sense of safety and security. Residents of Gries’Village also have the use of an exclusive gym. Owners can communicate with building management via a digital concierge service. Other amenities include a collection point where parcels are deposited for residents to collect if they miss any deliveries, and bicycle parking spaces with e-charging points.
SIGNA has been working on ways to open up access to Bolzano’s landmark Virgl hill for almost five years now. The project first saw the light of day during the development of WaltherPark. The central green space on the Virgl hill is located one storey higher than the centre of Bolzano, in a manner of speaking. SIGNA bought the 38 hectare plot on the Virgl and launched an international architecture competition in 2015 to construct a cable car link. The project was ultimately awarded to the respected Snøhetta architecture collective.
Almost precisely one year ago, discussions in Bolzano came to a head regarding the location of the archaeology museum housing Ötzi the ice man which – similarly to the Stadtmuseum opposite – is in dire need of additional space. The provincial government had been in negotiations with the owner of a neighbouring property but, unable to agree on a price, the decision was taken to look elsewhere and commission a public market research project.
Determined to add value to the Virgl, SIGNA quickly decided to participate and came up with a workable project that satisfied the interests of all concerned. Snøhetta’s cable car designers were asked to integrate a museum complex into the mountain station. The project caters to a wide range of uses: from hiking and walking between vantage points to events, outdoor and cultural experiences to museums and restaurants.