Innovation in the regeneration of the histric center in Sicily: Barcellona Pozzo di Gotto (ME)

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Abstract

AbstractThe criteria for intervention on the existing building heritage in the historic centers cannot be pursuedwithout taking into consideration the renovation of the whole relevant urban territory.This does not imply an idea to postpone to future planning, rather to increase the topics in the GeneralUrban Plan (PUG), by bringing into the PUG the elements of the traditional detailed plans for the historicareas with a methodology simplification.The detailed planning has been characterized in the years as “exemplary”, possibly due to the complexityof its project contents and rules and regulations, particularly in the historic areas. Indeed in Italy detailedplans for historic areas are quite rarely introduced and even more rarely implemented.In recent years there has been more awareness of the problem and commitment to change throughpractical actions. The regional regulations dedicated to the regeneration of the historic centers are anexample of this change, and aim at the renovation of the historic areas through a direct intervention (notsubordinate to the detailed plan) included in the General Urban Plan of the local administration.The 2007 PUG of Barcellona Pozzo di Gotto in Sicily (Fig. 1), is based on a residential capacity of 47,000people for the next twenty years, with an increase of around 5,000 people. These are distributed over 300hectares of urbanized area, out of which 86 hectares are represented by historic area, with a residentialcapacity of 11,600 people and a density of 135 pp/Ha. Recently the local administration has decided toadapt the PUG to the regulations for the regeneration of the historic center.The urban set up of the historic area is characterized by the alignment of the buildings on the old centralaxis of entrance and exit of the city, incorporating some of the historic rural boroughs. The urban set up isorganized as a chessboard, more or less regular, originally over more generating centers, that have todaydisappeared (the old Dome and the Theater, the first demolished in 1936 and the second one destroyedafter a fire in 1972).The building blocks include non allocated spaces and empty areas, as residue of the primitive building setup that was incorporated in the new urban network from the beginning of 1900s. The building units of thehistoric areas have been touched, particularly in the facades, with interventions that have alternated theiroriginal image.Nevertheless, the historic area preserves all its residential and commercial functions, even in therelationship with the new expansion areas and the productive areas.The boundaries of the historic area have been defined by taking into consideration the urban history, thebuilding heritage and its transformations, the functional aspects (accessibility, mobility, availability ofservices) so as to utilize again the historic building heritage itself.The regeneration interventions have been classified in simplified categories, divided into ordinary andextra-ordinary maintenance, restoration, preservative restoration, regeneration, extensive regeneration,demolition and reconstruction, renovation with the same building typology/philology, demolition withoutreconstruction. The individual categories are accompanied by other technical detailed regulations to beapplied “house-by-house” in the entire historic area.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages10
Publication statusPublished - 2012

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