Italy’s most fashionable city will undergo a gigantic surge in visitors this May when the Universal Exposition opens its doors. Milan Expo 2015 will play host for a second time (after a century-long wait) by welcoming a record 144 participating nations. An astonishing 2.6 million tickets have already been sold, with this year’s event focusing on global food conservation. Themed somewhat ungrammatically, ‘Feeding the planet, energy for life’, Milan’s Expo will attempt to build dialogues about nutrition, pollution and sustainable agricultural techniques.
The site itself, designed by architects Stefano Boeri, Richard Burdett, Mark Rylander and Jacques Herzog, will act as a massive mingling zone for scientists, futurologists and the general public to share ideas, not to mention Italian cuisine. Spread over one million square metres, and not without criticism from the city’s residents, the site is split into seven sections covering technology, lifestyle, science and innovation. It will also sit adjacent to Italy’s most important trade fair, Fiera Milano in the municipalities of Rho and Pero in northwest Milan.
The Expo site boasts an artificial lake surrounded by 20 pavilions representative of the Italian regions. There will be a further three pavilions to support the three geographical areas of Asia, Africa and South America. The final flourish will be a site of bioclimatic greenhouses focusing on food reproduction techniques enabled by the earth’s principal biomes. The concept will also stretch to individually thematic pavilions to educate visitors on global consumption, dietary essentials and, naturally, Italy’s love of food. Representatives from Dubai, who host the Expo in 2020, will certainly be taking notes.