Type of project: Bike Cafè

Project: Movimiento Centrale
Location: Siracusa, Italy
Status: Built
Client: Private
Built up area: 60mq


Project team: External Reference Architects
(Nacho Toribio, Carmelo Zappulla)
Collaboratos: Maria Laura Maiorana
Photographer: Alfonso Peralta

Movimentocentrale is a bike café located in Ortigia, the historic center of Syracuse, Sicily. Consisting of two areas, the bar and the bike workshop café is a place for bicycle lovers to meet for healthy refreshments. It is also an information hub for cycle tourists promoting bicycle friendly and sustainability-oriented initiatives.

Movimentocentrale is an example of a self-build project. A driving force in it´s development was that is has to be constructed entirely through DIY techniques, on a low budget and an even lower carbon footprint. All the details are the result of a collaborative design and fabrication process in which the owners actively participated. Therefore, the project is based on both spontaneous and structured research explorations.

The elements of this explorations are:

-The Skeletal boxes, which indiscriminately parasite the walls, showcasing the café’s stock.
-The open boxes, pixel-like seats that generate different topographic configurations.
-The exploded bike axonometric wallpaper which contextualizes the café within bicycle culture.
-The rib like bar, a large bar suspended over a platform, occupies the initial area of the bike café.
-The tables are formed of recycled wheel rims forming the structure of the tables.

In this project External Reference Architects acted as designers and facilitators to the clients, friends and family. Creating a framework for participants to design through play, to explore collectively and productively.