Wednesday, January 25, 2023

The General Manager of Riva del Garda Fierecongressi, Alessandra Albarelli, spoke to the microphones of Casa Italia Radio about the changes to be expected, the main topics to be covered and how to participate – on May 9 and 10 – in the upcoming edition of REbuild, the event that has been bringing together the entire construction industry for ten years.

What's new at REbuild 2023?

The first change concerns the event format. We thought of accentuating what was and has always been the idea behind REbuild, i.e. bringing our community together through educational sessions as well as enjoyable networking events. The idea is to create an arena, a space for visibility and exposure that facilitates informal meetings during the event, a space to showcase products, projects and services of interest to the entire construction and real estate community.

A significant change concerns the promoter of the event.

Riva Del Garda Fierecongressi has always organised this event in partnership with other organisations, which this year will be participating in other capacities. Compared to other events in Italy, REbuild is a neutral space, where our goal as organisers is to showcase our community giving a stage to all its members. Therefore, what's new at REbuild is that everyone is given the opportunity to express themselves to the full, highlighting their distinctive features and approaches. I am thinking of all companies that offer services for the construction sector or manufacture materials and products.

Ten years of experience, but how did this format come about and how has it developed over time?

This format was born ten years ago, after an analysis carried out together with the partners at the time: Habitech Distretto Tecnologico del Trentino and Progetto Manifattura, a production site working on green start-ups in the construction sector and beyond. We realised that Italy lacked a forum to talk about sustainability in the built environment. The starting point was that everything that could be built had already been built and that it was time we thought about upgrading what existed. We started from there, looking at international best practices in terms of technologies, materials, and design skills, which were completely different from the Italian ones. The objective was to look for solutions that could help our building stock to evolve, from the point of view of both manufacturers and national public administration and governance. So, we started from there, and it was quite a challenge.

Who is on the Scientific Committee in this 2023 edition?

The chairman of the Scientific Committee is Ezio Micelli, professor at the Iuav University in Venice. He is one of the brains behind many of the projects carried out by REbuild in the past, which is why he is also the person who gives a sense of continuity to what we have done over the past ten years. Then there is Alessandra Balduzzi of Cassa Depositi e Prestiti, responsible for urban regeneration projects. Mauro Burgio of Bryden Wood Milan, a major consulting firm, who will give important insights on the topic of sustainability and innovative projects. Mauro Casotto of Trentino Sviluppo and Habitech Distretto Tecnologico del Trentino, who represents the entire supply chain related to timber construction and new technologies in Trentino, a region at the forefront in this field. Daniele Guglielmino, who – in addition to having been a member of GBC Italy and Europe – is a representative of the Italian Society of Environmental Medicine (SIMA). Alberto Mattiello, an expert in innovation and technology who works in marketing, i.e. parallel to the construction context. And then two big names in the real estate sector: Emanuela Recchi, President of ULI Italia and Recchiengineering, and Silvia Rovere, President of Assoimmobiliare and owner of the real estate company Sensible Capital Srl. So, a remarkable Scientific Committee. I am honoured that professionals of this calibre have agreed to be part of this panel. 

What will be the main themes in 2023? What is the chosen theme and title of this edition?

This year, we started by reflecting on the state of the art of Italian construction and, since REbuild aims to bring together the entire construction supply chain, we had to find up-to-date content that was in line with this wide audience. We will focus on the built environment, but the topics covered are many. The title of the event is Integrate. Rethink. Transform. Three different but consecutive moments, arranged in an order that is not at all random, because the current market evolution calls for a very strong supply chain integration, a rethinking of construction and design processes, and also a transformation of the construction model and the built environment into something that is more sustainable and less energy intensive.

What is special about REbuild compared to other positioning events and fairs? Why should the construction and real estate industry recognise and embrace this event?

REbuild is not a sector-specific event, it is not an event for builders only, it is not an event for facility managers only: it is an event for everyone. The real estate sector has always organised top-class events on its topics but REbuild wants to invite this sector to discuss and connect with the construction industry, facility managers, apartment block managers and institutions. REbuild is, therefore, a hybrid space where we can discuss the major issues related to energy transition, new sustainable business models, the industrialisation of processes, and the potential of digital technology to connect different worlds.

Is there anything from the past editions that is worth mentioning?

There are many projects that have led the way in addressing issues that had not yet arisen in Italy. Among them, the off-site construction project was an extraordinary one, which also led to some very important partnerships and developments. I'm referring to Energiesprong, a revolutionary model for upgrading real estate, brought to Italy by REbuild, which gave rise to solutions now applied to various types of housing that we never thought we'd see in Italy. The challenge was to work with innovative projects from other countries, looking for solutions to redevelop existing buildings in a short time, without creating difficulties for their occupants. This meant moving the construction of the house from the building site to the factory, while respecting the characteristics of Italian construction.

In short, over the past few years at REbuild there has been the opportunity to develop projects and partnerships with different competences, which have created new tools and services for the market and have unlocked a significant development potential for our country; these are excellent cases.

How can people participate in REbuild, bearing in mind that there are different levels of participation? If someone has something to tell or if they want to convey an innovative idea or approach, what should they do?

Two calls will be opened at the end of January. 

The call for speakers is addressed to those who have projects, cases, or stories to tell related to the themes of REbuild. Applications can be submitted to the Scientific Committee, which will consider whether to include them in one of the conferences. The call for contributions is addressed to start-ups and is an opportunity for those who have just started their entrepreneurial journey to present a project and take part in the start-up competition. Those who want to participate as a company, showcasing their products, have the option of entering into a partnership, which varies depending on the desired visibility.

And for those who don't wanna miss out on the content and networking at REbuild, is it possible to just buy an entrance ticket?

You can already register, taking advantage of the benefits offered to those who join before the end of March.

The ticket price is 79 euros for two days full of valuable training opportunities. Participation is greatly facilitated for industry professionals and representatives of public administrations, as they can join free of charge by showing they are registered with a professional association. You can find all relevant information on the rebuilditalia.it website. Alternatively, you can send an email to info@rebuilditalia.it.

Listen to Alessandra Albarelli's interview for Casa Italia Radio on Spotify

Alessandra Albarelli: "Integra. Ripensa. Trasforma."

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