Reggio Children | Loris Malaguzzi International Centre | Reggio Emilia Approach

Architecture and history

The Loris Malaguzzi International Centre, promoted by the Municipality of Reggio Emilia, the Istituzione of Preschools and Infant-toddler Centres, Reggio Children, and the Fondazione Reggio Children - Centro Loris Malaguzzi is a place dedicated to those in Italy and the world who intend to promote quality education.


Each year the Loris Malaguzzi International Centre is visited by more than 130,000 people. It is a place open to the future, where children with their potentials are central, offering young people and families creative occasions, and the international educational community new professional development opportunities.


The idea of creating an International Centre in Reggio Emilia came from suggestions by Loris Malaguzzi and was taken up by various organisations until the municipal administration made it a commitment in the 1990s, leading a campaign to sensitise the public in order to gain wide-reaching citizen’s involvement.


The Centre is housed in the buildings which for more than half a century were the site of the historical Locatelli company and its Parmigiano-Reggiano Parmesan cheese warehouses. Architects Tullio Zini and ZPZ Partners were responsible for the project renovating the existing complex and the creation of new buildings.





First suggestions by Loris Malaguzzi  (1920 - 1994), pedagogista, educationalist and inspirer of the educational philosophy in Reggio Emilia’s municipal infant-toddler centres and preschools



First hypotheses for a working project were written.



Work groups were put together to make a feasibility study for the Malaguzzi Centre.



First ideas for the architectural design were presented to the city.



Reggio Emilia Municipality purchased the ‘Locatelli’ cheese warehouses.



The warehouses were opened to the public for the first time.

An area of the warehouses were given over to the Remida Creative Recycling Centre

A national architecture competition was held for the design of the Centre, with over 20 architect’s studios participating.



The project by architect Tullio Zini and ZPZ Partners was named as the winning project.

An exhibition of Competition projects was held.

The Centre had its first official public opening on Remida Day with the Sola Andata/One Way exhibition and over 19,000 visitors.



The first phase of renovation began.



The first part of the renovated building was officially opened. The offices of Reggio Children, and of the Documentation Centre, Istituzione of Preschools and Infant-toddler Centres transferred to the Centre.

The atelier areas, the exhibition hall, and the auditorium opened.



The second phase of renovation work began, for the creation of a new preschool and primary school, and a reception area with dining and restaurant.




The city’s twenty-first municipal preschool opened at the Loris Malaguzzi International Centre. In the school year 2009/2010 a first cycle of state primary school began in the same building, in continuity with the preschool.



The Malaguzzi Centre was completed.