Librerie Coop Ambasciatori, Bologna, Italy

The Project
The building of the former Ambasciatori Cinema in the historic center of Bologna, dating from the second half of the 19th century, was to become a covered market square located on three floors. The renovated space was intended to host Librerie Coop and Eataly, an innovative project that offers food, books and spaces for socializing and culture.

Librerie Coop is the chain of bookstores in Italy. Eataly is a chain of Italian food halls comprising a variety of restaurants, food and beverage counters.

Inside the restaurant, the sale of books is associated with the tasting of typical dishes in an environment new to the Italian tradition.

During the renovation and transformation of the old cinema, the glass was carefully specified to enhance the functionality and aesthetics of the place.

For the realization of the façade it was essential to specify a product that guaranteed the maximum brightness of the interior environment, and therefore Pilkington Optilam™ OW 12,8 laminated safety glass made of extra clear glass was used in double insulating glass units. The inner pane of the unit was made of Pilkington Optiphon™ Therm S3 low-emissivity laminated safety glass with sound insulation interlayer.

The 16 mm cavity was filled with argon for improved thermal insulation.
The important requirement was to guarantee a light transmission of 77%, particularly high for this type of application.

At the same time, the use of sound insulated glass has allowed to achieve noise reduction index Rw = 45 dB, which was necessary due to the location along busy streets in the city center.

To make the rooms even brighter, and enhanced by suggestive glimpses of medieval Bologna, the roofs were made with the use of motorized opening skylights, built with sheets of toughened solar control glass Pilkington Eclipse Advantage™ Arctic Blue T 10 mm, 16 mm air space with argon gas and Pilkington Optiphon™ Therm S3 low-emissivity acoustic laminated safety glass.

Such glass combination has allowed to achieve: Ug = 1.1 W/m²K, a solar factor of 20% and a sound insulation index Rw = 43 (-2; -6) dB.

The glass has also been used in the interior of the building, where the parapets have been made of Pilkington Optilam™ OW extra-clear laminated safety glass, class 1B1 according to EN 12600. They do not obstruct the view and give the impression of an open floor.

The escalators, also covered with extra-clear laminated safety glass with a strong aesthetic feature, letting the mechanism itself shine through.

The extra-clear glass deliberately used gives greater transparency and maximizes the transmission of natural light.

Photography: Marco Zanta
  Project ReferenceGL_PR0176
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Project Details
Via degli Orefici, 19, 40124 Bologna, Italy
Opening Date
Building Type
  • Commercial
Coop Adriatica, Bologna
About the Architect/Installer
RetailDesign – Venezia Marghera, Arch. Paolo Lucchetta con Mauro Cazzaro, Michela Tessari, Filippo Gambarotto
Fabricator: Simap, Rastignano Sistemi in alluminio Metra
Benefit Led Categories
  • Safety Security
  • Solar Control
  • Thermal Insulation