Territory and landscape


A careful study of the language and typological components characterizing, in different scales, a certain territory is an indispensable and fundamental instrument for a concrete estimate and program for an urban intervention, in both restoration and new building.
Each territorial organism – a valley area, consisting of a number of elementary organisms in the territory – has its own features which are the result of the typical ways in which the different communities that have settled there over the course of centuries have refer to that habitat.
In particular, in the slow process of transformation of the territory for settling purposes, these typical ways have to do with the choice of the place.They form the terms on which to organize the territory pertinent to every single nucleus by an adequate structural shaping of the soil destined for agriculture. Then come the different ways, typical of every area or even of every settled group of people, in which the area chosen for house-building is rationalized by a certain road plan, followed by the splitting of the ground into building lots according to a typology, or more simplyan idea of housing which in a particular place and historical time results in a common understanding between the individuals that are part of the same community. Lastly, to each territorial unit corresponds a typical way to use natural resources in building single houses in an aggregate with others similar to them to form the building tissues composing the settlements.
Therefore, besides the individual aspect which characterizes every single building anddistinguish it from those around it, there are some unchanging typological elements which join more individuals of the same kind and, even if not so evident at a first reading of the environment, reflect its deep structure, which one must face carefully before starting to operate on the territory with interventions of transformation or recovery, to fully evaluate their compatibility.
Further more, considering the great variety of environmental forms, a study of the unchanging typological elements permits us not to go astray by concentrating in the analysis of the single solutions in its detail but, through a series of progressive abstractions, to arrive directly at a recognition of the typical laws of formation and transformation of the settlements.