- Urban Sprawl over Countryside. The case of the Landscape Protection Plan in Sicily    click here to open paper content968 kb
by    Martinico, Francesco & Nigrelli, Fausto Carmelo & La Rosa, Daniele | fmartinico@dau.unict.it   click here to send an email to the auther(s) of this paper
Short Outline
In Sicily, urban sprawl is affecting many components of the landscape heritage. The definition of a Landscape Plan, with the helpful aim of GIS tools, represents the first attempt to study these phenomena and to propose normative solutions.
The increasing concentration of human settlements in Europe, not only along coastal areas, is posing considerable threats to environmental and cultural heritage. Landscape protection principles in most European countries have been recently defined by the European Convention, signed in Florence in 2000. According to this binding agreement the idea of landscape has been extended to a larger set of elements, including spoiled areas.
In Italy, urban sprawl is affecting greatly the most fragile but central component of the landscape heritage: the agricultural districts of the country. The phenomenon is diffusing not only in rich industrial areas, like the plane of river Po in Northern Italy, where sprawl is pervasive, but also in remote parts of lagging regions.
The same happens in Sicily where residential subdivisions are spreading both in densely populated coastal areas and in inner agricultural localities. The result is the deep transformation of valuable parts of the region that includes several sites listed by Unesco. Understanding the reasons of these trends is a complex task, considering that sprawl is taking place also in areas where there is a substantial reduction of inhabitants and economy is not flourishing.
The definition of a Comprehensive Landscape Plan that covers the entire extension of the island represents the first attempt to study these phenomena in depth and to propose normative solutions. This planning process, launched two years ago, has been conducted using extensively a Geographical Information System, a tool that has been helpful to cope efficiently with such a complex theme.
The paper shows some of the results of the extensive analyses and a selected sample of the regulatory norms devised. The latter have been conceived in order to cope with the new problems related to the uncontrolled spreading of residential ad production settlements taking into account the other main factors that affect landscape. Particular attention has been devoted to the analysis of the risks of detrimental landscape changes. The proposed case includes two different Sicilian provinces: Siracusa, and Enna. The study area include a large variety of problems and represents an open field for experimenting planning solutions. Some of these results are presented and critically discussed.
Landscape Protection Plan; Sprawl control; GIS; Sicily
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