Since 2011, UNESCO has defined the concept of Historical Urban Landscape as an area determined by historical stratifications of cultural and natural values that include not only the historic center but a wider urban context. The Urban Landscape Recommendation of 2011 considers the growth of the city also from this heritage and its vulnerability. Within this landscape are often found abandoned buildings or ruins, symbols and spaces of a past that the contemporary city must give back to the community as an added value and as a possibility of sustainable development. The architectural project must rethink the ruin in a contemporary key, the reuse with new functions. The themes of recovery today require careful and targeted choices: the project must enhance the ruin, improve the ways of perception and learning of its cultural value and increase the public use. In this sense, interventions are closely linked to social and economic factors. The case study is a former Franciscan convent, the convent of St Anthony of Padua, built in Scicli, in the province of Ragusa, Sicily, in 1514. It is located in a peripheral area of the town and it was once in the open countryside. It is in a state of ruin but it preserves intact a sixteenth-century chapel, one of the rare elements arrived to us, after the earthquake of 1693. In addition to the important cultural value, this building has great potential to revive the fate of the local economy, in a sustainable and innovative key. The research, through the analysis and history of some similar cases (castles and ruins of various kinds), intends to propose actions of transformation, integration and improvement of the potential of these places to offer spaces of aggregation for the community, of social and economic sustainability, of rethinking the public space.
Prof. Fernanda Cantone, architect and Ph.D. in Building and Environmental Recovery, is Associate Professor in Technology of Architecture at University of Catania. She teaches Building Recovery Technologies. She has held seminars at many Italian universities, also for PhD and Masters. She has been supervisor of more than 100 University and Sperimental Thesis. She is vice-president of the degree course in Architecture. She has received numerous awards for thesis and the gold medal at the International Domus Restoration Award. She is a member of the Italian Society of Architecture Technology (Sitda) and is participant of clusters Recovery and Maintenance and Architectural Heritage. She is Coordinator of the Scientific Technical Committee for Riviera dei Ciclopi Ecomuseum, Catania, Sicily, is a full Member of Green Lines Institute (Barcelos, Portugal), is director of the Editorial Series “Project and Sustainable Construction” Gangemi Editore, Rome. She has participated in numerous international conferences. He has published several monographs and essays on the issues of building and urban recovery, on building redevelopment, on urban regeneration and valorization. He has provided scientific advice to numerous projects of recovery and building and urban redevelopment. She has been on the scientific committee of numerous national and international conferences. Prof. Francesca Castagneto, architect and Ph.D. in Building and Environmental Recovery, is joint Professor in Technology of Architecture at University of Catania-School of Architecture in Siracusa. She teaches Environmental Design and Technological Culture for Designing. She is a member of the Italian Society of Architecture Technology (SitdA) and is participant of clusters “Environmental Design” and “Nearly Zero Energy Building”. She is scientific coordinator of ManUrba Laboratory (Research Laboratory for Urban Maintenance and Building requalification) placed in SDS Architettura in Siracusa and is coordinator of Editorial Series “ManuUrba” LetteraVentidue Edizioni Siracusa. She takes care of the aspects concerning the relationship between building and context with particular attention to the use of resources and to the material recycling. From 2011-13 she was Scientific coordinator of the European Project “Euro South Hub” financed by Italy-Malta 2007-13 Program, that combine the topics of sustainability of the action for regenerating Hystoric Centres with social innovation problems.