A plan for´Città futura´, Piombino

Client: I.G.P. s.p.a., Gruppo IRI/SOFINPAR
Chronology: Plan 1995
Urban plan: Mario Gallarati con Letizia Masciotta

The town in the past was characterized by a high degree of organic unity, deeply rooted in its slow process of formation and transformation, by successive stratifications, strictly connected with the orographical structure of the place, the network of roads over its territory and the systems of landed property distribution.
To each settlement corresponded a pertinent territory, so structured as to thin away in proceeding from the centre to the periphery where it met the border-line of other settlements. As a consequence, the territorial body consisted of different scale sub-organisms, each having its own centre and its own periphery.
The modern city, the fruit of successive expansions of the original settlements occupying a "nodal" position in the territory, grows at first by saturating its own original territory and then by acquiring areas belonging to other elementary organisms, originally endowed with an autonomous structure, to end by conglobating them totally within its undifferentiated peripheries.
Both in the presence of "spontaneous" growths (the greater part of the urban peripheries in the second post-war period) and in the case of "planned" growths (see, for example, the Plan Cerda in Barcelona or the 19th-20th century expansion plans of La Spezia), the new urban structure tends to extend itself like a uniform net - characterized in some cases by a functional monothematic aspect - over a great variety of different local realities, each having its own shape and its own functional balance (of residential areas, spaces and structures of collective interest, productive areas, etc.).
Planning the modern city anew means, first of all, becoming conscious of the growing complexity of the territory that the town (or the city) embraces in one urban "continuum", through the acknowledgement of the relations and the successive degrees of hierarchy between the elements which form - on different scales - the structure of the city.