The Historical Garden Network – Introduction

The will to establish a garden network is born in the 2006, on the occasion of the International Meeting of Historical Gardens kept in honour of the 25th year of the Firenze’s Carta.

Organised by the Historical Documentation Center in Cinisello Balsamo’s municipality, together with the collaboration of the Department of Building Environment Science & Technology (B.E.S.T.) of the Polytechnic of Milan, it finally become specific in a couple of years as an Association.

It deals with an network of information, comparison, exchanges of ideas and experiences, collaboration between the public and the private sectors sharing similar situations about property and administration (meant as conservation and valorisation) of historical gardens and parks opened to the community in the North-Milan and Brianza’s territory, hoping one day to get extended in the entire Lombardia. Contacts and synergies are also activated with other networks and cultural systems, of national and international importance, sharing our own goals. ReGiS network can be seen as the instrument to reach out this goals, to promote the comparison between respective experiences, finding solutions to diffuse problems, to put into effects our didactic, cultural, tourist and landscape programs.

ReGiS is above and beyond administrations as it is an Association finalized uniquely to support and technical-scientific orientation influences thanks to the adduction of the various competences, with no claim to get into decisional matters.

Surely it can gives important clues to resolve administration and compatibility problems between historical and cultural importance and public use of the sites. Most of them, for example, are part of an historical residential “system” of Houses and their gardens that has and has been fundamental as a form of administrations of the lands: in the first place under the government of the House of Hapsburg, then linked to the Cisalpino govern.

Acting this way, ReGiS recovers an important memory of the historical situation even from the territorial systems point of view: a network of pleasure houses, that were strategic points of government too for politic and agricultural production.

Secondly the Polytechnic of Milan active involvement, with its extraordinary experience in the field, concerning making inventories, tabulates, studies and experiences in planning, and the participation of specialist schools for gardeners such as the Scuola Agraria del Parco di Monza and the Istituto di Formazione Fondazione Minoprio, allows us to bring always new solutions and ideas to local representatives, always looking for answers to maintenance and conservation conservations but facing sometimes with non-specialised stuff. The sharing of knowledge, scientists and professionals is not enough: we need the entire local community to get in touch with the historical and cultural reality of this gardens they barely know of, most of the times wholesale used and arguably preserved. The Department of Architecture Heritage and Landscape of Milan involvement and the possibility to work side by side with experts in several fields can simplify the solving of contingent problems.

Inspired to the Botanic Network of Lombardia, ReGiS is the first Italian experience in this matter and it’s aim is to establish an organism of green architectures in the landscape, publics as well as privates, historical as well as recent past built-up, to increase the quality of the environment and the preservation of the citizens’ identity,  thanks to the direct participation of schools, administrators and technicians used to a proper approach to this important assets. It gets concretised with an Association which has its own social purpose, a spread out visibility all over Italy, a co-partnership between public and privates, and economic sustainability reached also with new financing formulas.

ReGiS is constituted by: Milano and Monza-Brianza’s districts; the Polytechnic of Milan (DPA and PaRID); Centro formazione Fondazione Minoprio; Scuola Agraria del Parco di Monza; Municipalities of: Cesano Maderno, Desio, Lainate, Monza, Sesto San Giovanni and Cinisello Balsamo (leading role).

Also other realities have already joined the Association: Amici di Villa Litta, Amici del Milanino, Amici del Verde, Pro-Monza, Associazione VerdiSegni.