Published Friday August 4 in the Italian Insider.
Strategic Project for Bagnoli Naples sealed at Palazzo Chigi
By Florence Brock
NAPLES – Time for celebration has come as stakeholders finally come together before Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni today to seal the requalification plan for Bagnoli, Naples.
In a closed door roundtable on Friday, the government held its first central government control room meeting established by the President of the Council of Ministers in order to proceed with the environmental requalification and productive relaunch of former Italsider.
Prime Minister Gentiloni, Minister of the Environment Gianluca Galletti, Vice Minister of Economic Development, Teresa Bellanova, Governor of Campania Vincenzo De Luca, Mayor of Naples Luigi De Magistris and the Government Commissioner Salvo Nastasi presided the meeting.
Preliminarily signed July 19 in Naples by Minister De Vincenti, Governor de Luca and Mayor de Magistris, the attempts at setting insurmountable obstacles for any kind of institutional convergence on the northern area of the metropolis seem to have been put to rest for good.
“Today’s meeting is an extremely important step for a real strategic project such as the reclamation and regeneration of Bagnoli. I considered it important to seal this milestone in a symbolic meeting here at Palazzo Chigi,” stated Gentiloni today. “We are in the midst of a huge urban regeneration operation that is truly impressive for the dimensions of the area which aims first and foremost at protecting the health of its citizens together with its environmental recuperation. As it has done in the last years, the government continues to take on its responsibilities. We have come this far thanks to the work done within this control room and the realization of the project will now depend greatly on the continuous harmony among institutions. Competitiveness and viability of our urban areas depend on the realisation of great projects such as this.”
“Today marks an important day,” commented De Magistris just after the meeting. “There was an institutional atmosphere during the conversation and reciprocal respect in the strategic development for the city, the Campania Region and the entire nation. It is the best agreement possible that, up until just a few months ago, seemed impossible. We are very satisfied because all the requests of the city were perceived. Compared to how things started, this is truly a whole other ball game,” the mayor stated with complete satisfaction.
Once a huge industrial area called ‘Italsider’, the northern Naples neighbourhood has long been the object of failed projects and urban transformation.
With the enormous zone closed for good since 1992, companies like Bagnoli Futura and others have made unsuccessful attempts at converting the area without success.
Amidst the accolades for the new requalification project now underway with the mayor’s blessing, locals who fear it as just another attempt to give a euphemistic name to what is actually a process of real estate speculation will just have to wait and see.