In many modern cities, the cross, typical of the roman camp – or castrum
– is still evident as the form of the town. It was a distinctive perpendicular shape and the two street crossings were known as the Cardo and the Decumano. This shape has been the inspiration for the building of the Expo Milano 2015
Exposition Site. This very simple shape was chosen with the aim of helping visitors find
their directions through events and shows, and participant countries
as they display their products.
The main street, the Decumano, crosses the whole site from east to west for one and a half kilometers. On either side of the Decumano, are the national pavilions of the participant countries, and of 130, around 60 will develop a self-built pavilion. All others will be inside a Cluster. Symbolically the Decumano connects to the place where food is consumed (the city) and the place where food is produced (the countryside).
As the other main street that crosses the Decumano, the Cardo is 350 meters long. It connects the exposition site from the north to the south where the Italian Pavilion is located. In this area, called Palazzo Italia, all the cultures and traditions, typical of the Italian food industry, are showcased.
This is the main square where the two main streets cross, acting as a symbolic place where Italy meets the rest of the world. At the four extremities of the Cardo and the Decumano are some of the most important structures of Expo Milano 2015: the Mediterranean Hill, the Expo Center, the Open Air Theater and the Lake Arena. These landmarks offer visitors a sense of direction and create locations for hosting some of the biggest Expo events.
Pangea for Expo Milano 2015
Riva 1920 has created Pangea, a table of 80 sq.m on display at Piazza Italia, Cardo/Decumano crossing. Designed by Michele De Lucchi, this piece takes its inspiration and its name from the supercontinent that united all the lands above sea level. Symbolic of the unity of all the countries linked by the universal theme of food, this project references a return to the planet’s origins and to its unity, free of state borders, prejudice, differences between one people and another. The top of the table is composed of 19 moulded pieces, all in ancient Kauri wood, thousands of years old, preserved in swamps in its native New Zealand; the supporting legs are made of recycled oak marker posts, retrieved from the lagoon of Venice. Riva 1920 has created an all-embracing experience, given meaning by the wisdom that comes from working with wood.
The UN's presence in the Cardo and Decumano
A ride through the world has to start from the United Nations. At the beginning of the Decumano, close to PavillionZero and ideally starting point of Expo Milan 2015, we find the UN Garden. A green area, created in collaboration with KIP, where visitors will be introduced to the Zero Hunger Challenge and to the field work of United Nations agencies in humanitarian emergencies and in development programmes. The UN
is present with 18 multimedia installations, easily recognizable by their giant blue spoons. These UN Spaces are located in various areas of the site along the itinerary dedicated to the theme “The Zero Hunger Challenge • United for a sustainable world”.