Project Year​
Pastrengo, Italy​
Municipality of Pastrengo​
Lead Architect
Davide Longhi
Massimiliano Depieri
Alberto Tomei
Elena Spolaore
Andrea Turato
Lighting Design
Photo Credits


The objective of the new project, as well as attempting a perfect integration with the paving of the center already built and the imposing staircase of the Town Hall, was to revitalize the historic center by providing spaces for cultural, religious, civic and recreational activities (therefore working with the slopes , limiting the height differences), integrating the localization of some limited-time parking spaces to a plan of strong pedestrianization, in support of the nearby commercial activities in the process of being relocated. The square of the Church of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross was a marginal space of the city although potentially a very important hub for the tourist development of the historic centre. In fact, from this square you can enjoy the only view of the valley towards Lake Garda and from here some suggestive routes start on the hills along the Adige, still completely agricultural, with eighteenth-century rural settlements of great historical and landscape value. In addition to limiting the parking lot to four parking spaces (for the only commercial activities left in this square), the project develops a strategy to enhance the churchyard, creating a belvedere with benches and trees to the south along the river stone wall and enhancing the votive capital of the noble building that overlooks the square (previously in contact with cars). Also in this case the paving is in porphyry cubes for the driveway, such as via Roma, and large slabs of Lessini stone, which also wrap around the sides of the church, rising up to allow access for the disabled to the building of worship, and eliminate the artificial ramp on the staircase of the church facade. The design process was structured according to “design moves” which can be summarized as follows:

  • limitation of vehicular traffic to a single lane;
  • enhancement of the pedestrian connections with the pedestrian paths towards the hills on the Adige and the rural villas;
  • reduction of parking spaces to four for commercial activities;
  • creation of a belvedere towards the lake with trees and benches;
  • extension of the pedestrian space;
  • integration with existing floors;
  • reuse and relocation of some stone elements present in the square (stone basins and nineteenth-century bollards) to delimit the pedestrian areas;
  • recovery of a particularly degraded small urban courtyard and of the stone wall on the belvedere;
  • elimination of the architectural barriers of the church and the parish centre;
  • integration of the church stairway into the design of the square and access to the bell tower.


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Davide Longhi

Davide LONGHI was born in Vasto, Italy in 1969.
He graduated with honors in Architecture in Venice with an urban design thesis.
Winner of Max Kelly postgraduate scholarship to study Sydney Harbour’s Metropolitan
Strategies, promoted from the Australian Government of NSW .

He obtained a PHD in International Quality of Design with a thesis on urban
development in Asian cities.
He lives and works in Padua where he founded in 1999, PWSA, PatchWork Studio
Architects, a versatile container of studies, designs and projects.

The most important of his research themes is about the origin and transformations of
public spaces and wide-area planning; he won the national prize of Gubbio for the
squares of Pastrengo-Verona.
He has been following through the years, a lot of urban projects in Veneto Region,
working since 2006 on the PTRC, the Strategic Regional Plan of Veneto.

He has also worked on many residential projects around the world.
He loves a functional and creative home, at the same time. Fresh spaces but full of
life, and where the internal-external relationship is the key to interiors paths and
He is a lover of 1950s / 1970s design, especially Italian and American, and he loves to
include vintage pieces of modern design in his projects that he looks for with care.
Often the design of the stairs inside his own homes are coming a spatial landmark
and an interesting opportunity for a change of perspective within domestic spaces.
He loves designing the scenographic transitions of environments with light, which,
especially in the evening, light up with atmospheres.

He has followed numerous projects for shops and chains, and tries to respond with
innovative and functional spaces to the different types of merchandising.
Behind choices it often hides a very complex marketing strategy and a strong focus
on cost control. Above all the shops tell the expertise and professionalism of industrial
groups or enthusiasts about watchmaking, wine, food, coffee or producers of sofas
and furniture dealers.

He was the curator of the exhibition “Twentieth Century. Architectures and cities of
Veneto”, event of the XIII Biennale of Architecture in Venice and the author of the
eponymous volume.

He has held seminars, conferences and workshops In many universities: Sydney
(Sydney University and University of Technology, Sydney), Seoul (Myongji University),
Beijing (Tsinghua University), Brussels (Institut Supérieur ’’Architecture Saint-Luc),
Nancy (Ecole de Architecture), XXV and XXVI ILAUD (International Laboratory of
Architecture and Urban Design).

He has taught at:
2014-2015, University of Ferrara;
2014-16, Future University, Sudan;
2001-2013, IUAV University of Venice Faculty of Architecture;
2012-2013, University of Padua, Faculty of Engineering and Architecture;
2011-2013, Erasmus Intensive Programme (IP)
2004-2008, IUAV University of Venice, Faculty of Spatial Planning;
2005-2006, École National Supérieure d’Architecture in Strasbourg;
2003 École d’Architecture de Nancy;
2000 and 2001, I.L.A.U.D., International Laboratory of Architecture and Urban Design,
directed by Giancarlo De Carlo.