It was an unusual dialogue, the one staged on the occasion of World Environment Day 2021. The protagonists were Olivier François, CEO Fiat and CMO Stellantis, and Stefano Boeri, architect and urban planner, creator of the Bosco Verticale. A real web talk on how architecture can help to redesign the cities of the future and an analysis of the opportunities for a “New Rennaisance”.
Two different worlds, the architectural and the automotive, linked by a common inspiration: to contribute to improving the quality of air inside cities and reduce the level of pollution. A direction in which these two realities have already taken concrete steps: the Bosco Verticale by Boeri contributes to cleaning the area by absorbing CO2 thanks to the 27,000 plants it is composed of; on the other hand, the new electric 500 allows zero-emission mobility.
During the meeting, Francois emphasized that the lockdown was just one of the last alarm bells from nature, during which, however, nature has returned to show signs of interesting vitality, such as the renewed presence of wildlife in the cities. Connecting to this speech, Fiat CEO and CMO Stellantis stated that the decision to launch the New 500 electric car, and to move in this direction, had already been taken before Covid.
Today, François points out, the new mission of the 500 is to create sustainable mobility for all. The goal is to be able to offer the market electric cars that do not cost more than combustion cars. Consequently, between 2025 and 2030, Fiat will gradually support a radical change: the product range will become electric only.
For his part, Stefano Boeri stressed the importance of acting on the cities in a very short time: the levels of CO2 and pollutants emitted daily are now critical, and nature is the only ally in this situation: it is not possible to absorb pollutants in any other way. This is why the two ideologies merge in the same conviction: that the ideal time has come to act effectively and clean up the polluted air.
In what way? The thought is quite clear and at the same time ambitious, praiseworthy and stimulating: as evidence of the deep interest that the Fiat group and Stellantis have in environmental issues, François and Boeri have announced a project dedicated to the transformation of the Lingotto, a green initiative that will see the runway of the former factory become a lush garden (the largest in Europe, suspended) ready to host 28,000 species of plants chosen from the Piedmontese varieties present in the area.
The central idea was to take advantage of World Environment Day 2021 to bring together, right at the Bosco Verticale, two worlds that share important values: Stefano Boeri on board the Nuova 500 and Olivier Francois with an electric scooter. The two protagonists discussed the urgency required by the situation and the important opportunity to inspire change, seizing the call to action of this year’s Day: “Together we can be #generationrestoration”.
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