Metal Staircase by
Francesco Librizzi Studio


Metal Staircase by Francesco Librizzi Studio

A wireframe staircase leads to a new top floor inside this renovated apartment in Milan by architect Francesco Librizzi.

Metal Staircase by Francesco Librizzi Studio

Before renovation the small apartment comprised just two rooms in a house built in 1900, but Librizzi was able to insert a mezzanine bedroom beneath the high ceilings.

Metal Staircase by Francesco Librizzi Studio

The staircase is made from 14mm-wide lengths of iron, which create ladder-like treads inside a rectilinear tower.

Metal Staircase by Francesco Librizzi Studio

For stability, the base of the staircase is screwed into the hexagonal concrete tiles that cover the floor.

Metal Staircase by Francesco Librizzi Studio

See all our stories about staircases »

Metal Staircase by Francesco Librizzi Studio

Here's some text from Francesco Librizzi:

A very small apartment within a very “Milanese” building dated 1900. Two rooms plus a bathroom, characterized by a narrow footprint compared to the quite high ceiling.

Metal Staircase by Francesco Librizzi Studio

Windows, doors, and above all the floor tiles, had finishes and materials survived to another century: something precious to save as a resource for the new inhabitants of this space.

Metal Staircase by Francesco Librizzi Studio

The strong identity of the interiors and the peculiarity of the narrow high section, gave the chance for a minimum but very significant intervention. We thought it was only necessary to unveil the hidden potential of the space, leaving all the rest almost untouched. Nothing melanchonical, but also no obsession for contemporarity.

Metal Staircase by Francesco Librizzi Studio

Adding a new layer to the exiguous surface available in the house was necessary. Making the trajectory to reach it architectonically visible, was all we needed to do. A new thin wireframe wrapping the bodies while approching to “+1 level”: a suspended night area inside the old house.

Metal Staircase by Francesco Librizzi Studio

Axonometric drawing - click above for larger image

  • ketaki

    Extremely uncomfortable for climbing up.

  • Donkey

    This project has made me realise that by naming it a ladder, it seems perfectly safe. By naming it a staircase, it seems life-threateningly dangerous.

    Isn’t that weird?

    • Concerned Citizen

      No, it’s not weird. You are just playing semantics to justify it. Actually, it is not safe as a ladder, either.

  • lucienne li

    It’s a nice graphic element, but descending at night with bare feet must be really uncomfortable. The ceramic floor is incredibly beautiful.

  • I don't know anything about Milan but I don't think we'd get this one past buildling regs in the UK!

  • jos


  • did

    Nice! But isn’t it painful for the feet?

  • Oh. I like the idea but I am scared to use it since the staircase has single rod steps. Is it a risky one?

  • urb

    1: beautiful
    2: my feet hurt

  • Doesn’t look very stiff to me either. I’m not a fan of bouncy staircases.

  • edward

    Please do not have an accident on this, it’s far too beautiful.

    The last thing I want is the drones that have pushed function over from to the point where design is close to becoming void of all poetry to be proven right.

    (Or you hurting yourselves of course – I mean that comes first ;) )

  • The first photo showing the blurred image of a model in a flowing white dress and (seemingly) bare feet makes me think: OUCH!

  • What's wrong with a spiral staircase? Not artsy or vanguard enough?

  • Felipe

    It’s actually a very creative way to use an extremely confined space. It may not be the most appealing look at first, however after a while it grows on you. I like it, but please wear some shoes!

  • No fatties would make it up. 14mm square would bend… Nice as a temp. Single spine job much better idea. Thumbs down on this one

  • Sam

    Beautiful piece, but as someone with small kids it makes me rather nervous!

  • Concerned Citizen

    More artsy-fartsy than practical, this element is a hazard in this residence. The civilized world would never allow such to be used. I suppose changing bed linens and such involves tossing the stuff up and down the landing. I wonder how long it will take the occupant to replace it.

  • Mahmoud

    If I could be a young man forever, I like.

  • lior

    I love it! I guess to explore the new, you always to need to make few sacrifices in term of comfort. I think it is a staircase/ladder and also piece of art. Well done!


    This is amazingly beautiful. I don’t see why it should be uncomfy to climb up barefoot, it’s like climbing a loft bed, no? And a rather secure ladder also. Even as a child I would have loved it, although I admit my mother would have been scared by that ;)

  • rich

    Enough said about the staircase/ladder. Are you certain the original house was from 1990? Maybe 1890 or earlier?

  • Roque

    Well it shows that extremely simple design may be painful and dangerous. Just imagine you have to go down fast, in an emergency or just a hurry going to the bathroom. Simple is not always usable.

  • taqui

    “ouch, ouch, ouch, ouch, ouch, ouch…”

  • David

    You wouldn’t want to climb this staircase after a couple of drinks.

  • Daniel

    This is not a staircase, but a ladder. As an object it is very beautiful. As a product it does not look at the user at all, so in my opinion the design failed.