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Geo Urbanism

In modernity, the project incorporated the future, anticipated it, moved from the contradictions of the present to find organizational, technical and spatial solutions to outline a better future. The project expressed an extraordinary confidence in science, in progress, but its temporal projection was not lost in the distant future as it happened in social utopias, it produced, rather, models for the short and medium term. The town planning plans for the whole of the last century had a temporal projection of 15-20 years. It is still so? At the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries, large infrastructural works and large city transformation plans were carried out within a few years. Faced with the functional and health crisis of the cities, the political and technical project managed to find advanced solutions capable of giving a lasting change to urban development. Today it is different, especially in our country. The project seems to be defenseless in the face of changes in the environment, climate and the profound transformations of a territory at risk, characterized by the expansion of degraded and abandoned soils. The new scenario requires a different planning, a longer and deeper project time span than that of modernity. The problem lies precisely here, the project caged in short-term political designs, is blocked on today, on a present accepted as ineluctable. The project must now incorporate a longer-term future, acquire a capacity for broad vision and at the same time close, attentive to long and local networks. A flexible, adaptive project, able to adapt both to the scarcity of today's resources, and to the need to deal with long-term visions.

The new dimension of the urbanized world and the worsening of the environmental conditions produced by the increasing pollution of the air, water, soils and global warming, impose new paradigms and new tools for the Plan and the Project. If Landscape urbanism and Ecological Urbanism have registered the crisis of the contemporary city, introducing a strong landscape and environmental component into planning, it seems to us to make sense to put at the center of reflection on new intervention strategies: both the geographical dimension of the territories and the soil, understood in its biospheric thickness (atmosphere, subsoil, water, all decisive elements for the regeneration of the environment). The reference to geography hinges, in reality, on its root Geo, Earth. We need an urban planning vision of the Earth. Geo as the territorial dimension of the city that expands to the planetary scale; Geo as a necessary environmental condition to react to the catastrophe of climate change; Geo as globalization and geopolitics; Geo as geomorphology, as a form of the territory; Geo as geology, soil, terrain, earth's crust that encompasses the built, becoming as a whole the support of urban transformations; Geo as a site, place, local context, but open to global networks, geography as a system of settlement, technological and environmental infrastructure networks. A geo-urbanism for a geo-city. Geo-urbanism as a strategy of conformation, correlation and integration of environmental infrastructures.

Rosario Pavia.

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