Security, accessibility and logistics at the UniversitÓ della Svizzera italiana

Security on the Lugano and Mendrisio campuses has been entrusted to a night-watch team. USI night guards carry out their duties with due discretion; however, should the need arise, they are fully authorised to stop anybody seen acting suspiciously on the premises at night, especially in the computer areas which are accessible to USI students only.
Lugano: Tel. 058 666 4730

A personalised ID magnetic card enables USI students to gain access to computer rooms round the clock. On the Lugano campus there are about 100 PCs available, while in Mendrisio there are approximately 80 work stations between PCs and MACs.

Visiting fellows
At USI, research fellows (with or without work contract) can benefit from:

  • A personalised magnetic card - which can be used to open doors (key function), as a Library user's card, and to activate printers and photocopiers.
    To this end, visiting scholars are kindly asked to forward a passport-sized digital photograph, formatted for .jpg or .jpeg (of up to 300 KB)
  • Personal Account (personal e-mail address, full access to USI's IT network, on-line resources, e-courses, etc.)

To collect your Login and password details, please report to Helpdesk once you have received confirmation of being 'enabled' (Helpdesk in Room 164, Central Building, check opening hours).

The Lugano and Mendrisio campuses are duly equipped with the appropriate facilities.
For specialist advice and assistance, please contact:
Pro Infirmis Luganese e Mendrisiotto
Via dei Sindacatori 1
6900 Massagno
Tel. +41 (0)91 960 28 70
Fax +41 (0)91 960 28 88

Public transport:

Students and visiting scholars who plan to travel around Switzerland during their stay should investigate the 'Half Fare' Pass, available at ticket offices of the Swiss Federal Railway station. Further information can be found at There are also monthly passes at reasonable prices for daily train commuting between Switzerland and Italy.
The railway station of Mendrisio - only a few minutes' walk from the Academy - is on the direct line connecting Mendrisio with Lugano and Milan.
From Lugano's main train station one can reach the Campus by bus (it takes you about 25 minutes on foot).

An efficient network of buses assures easy travel throughout the city of Lugano and its immediate outskirts. Villages in the surrounding district can be reached by regional buses (ARL, Autolinee Regionali Luganesi) and the yellow coaches (operated by the postal system). To find out more:

In Mendrisio the no. 1 bus and a yellow coach ('autpostale') assure regular service between the Academy of Architecture and the towns of Chiasso and Como. For information and timetables:

Driving and Parking
The legal driving age in Switzerland is 18. A valid foreign licence allows you to drive in Switzerland for the first 12 months of your stay.
In Lugano parking in the vicinity of the University is rather limited.
In Mendrisio some free parking is available in the public car park near the Exhibition Centre (Centro Manifestazioni Mercato Coperto).  Fee-paying parking is available in the streets near the Academy (for cheaper rates, six-monthly season tickets may be purchased) and at the municipal multi-storey car park.

Bicycles are the most effective and efficient way to move around town. If you wish to purchase a bike at real-bargain prices, check out the following outlet:
Soccorso Operaio Svizzero SOS, Atelier RI-cicletta,
Via Zurigo 17, 6900 Lugano
tel. +41 91 921 01 02
A Bike Sharing station (velopass) for the Lugano-Paradiso line is also available on campus with free subscription offered by USI. More information at