Inner Landscapes: 
analysis, approaches and regeneration strategies

Arin Alia, Libia Cuomo

Arin Alia Graduate student at Politecnico di Milano. During his studies, he had the opportunity to collaborate as teaching assistant in archi- tecture and urban design studios. He cur- rently lives and works in Stockholm.

Libia Cuomo After the graduation in Interior Design at Isti- tuto Europeo di Design, she decided to con- tinue her studies in Architecture. Graduated at Politecnico di Milano, since 2015 she works as a freelance architect collaborating with architecture firms specialized in interior renovation, retail and exhibition design. She now works and lives between Sorrento and Milan.

The essay is an investigation of the phenomenon of marginalization suffered by the “Aree Interne” (Inner Landscapes), an indisputable resource of the Italian territory, which until recently has not been given adequate resonance within the policies of territorial development. This issue is strictly linked to that of the abandonment of an extremely vast number of villages which has been undergoing since the Second World War.

The problem of the depopulation of the Inner Landscapes is extremely topical, as demonstrated by the research work on local development carried out in universities, the multi-volume publication “Recycle Italy” which investigates the transformation dynamics of the Italian territory and the exhibition held at the Triennale di Milano - Il Bel Paese, progetto per 22,621 centri storici (The Beautiful Country, a project for 22,621 historical centers) - which illustrates the potential of generating territorial scale protection by the means of small scale actions.

However, Inner Landscapes are the subject of national and European programs to encourage repopulation and revitalize these areas rich in resources for development. In particular, in the Italian framework, the National Strategy for Inland Areas has been promoted as an initiative specifically aiming at allocating European funds for the recovery of the Italian Inner Landscapes.

The essay, after outlining the problems and the regulatory framework, explores the various types of intervention adopted in recent decades and finally, approaches and regeneration strategies of the so-called “polipheries” (a play on the word peripheries) are illustrated.

The condition of the existence of the Inner Landscapes is the acknowledgment of the immense value, both economical and cultural, that those territories represent, understanding that their protection becomes only possible when it is promoted or supported by a resident population that can become the guardian of those territories itself.

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