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orto diffuso, mapping urban vegetable gardens in Milan

orto diffuso is a website, a map, and a multimedia project on vegetable and community gardens all over Europe

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Transcript of orto diffuso, mapping urban vegetable gardens in Milan

Orto diffuso
Libere rape metropolitane
Zappata Romana
indipendent platform
every content is on creative commons
Interactive map of vegetable gardens:
video, photos, interviews on European community gardens
Multimedia project
municipal allotments
community gardens
to show the consistency of urban horticulture
to Milan Municipality
network of community gardens in Milano
Maps are more than geographical
They are also stories,
and lives and are inseparable
from the political,
social and cultural context which
they describe.
rticipatory maps are the creation of maps by members of a community. In this sense Orto diffuso is not a full participatory map yet, but it can be. It can be converted in a wiki map, which means that everybody, as in wikipedia, can put a new dot and information on the map.

The map, before the network, let immediately understand the relationships beetween the town,
the neighborhood and people. Creating new urban connections.
In my experience I noticed that
people are not confortable with maps,
nor with wiki. So Orto diffuso it was not build by people, but only by me, and is still only me
who works on it.
The starting project of mapping
every balcony failed, due to the sense
of property: people do not like to give
personal details, even if I do not ask
the exact address.
An interactive map can show three time dimensions:
The present: a reproduction of what is happening
The past: it keeps a story of what happened
The future: ideas for actions

Orto diffuso was born in 2009. The first idea was to build a platform which can be used to make a sort of “coming out” for every kind of urban horticulture in Milan (from municipal alottments, to community gardens, to balcony). This could be helpful to change the vegetable gardens preception as areas for poor and old people, and to record the astonishing involvment of people in this issue in the last years.
People can use the map to see that others are doing the same things, they can feel the need of connections and of places where share thoughts and actions.
Cog italian
Community gardens are born to meet the need for change in our cities, the need to redesign towns bottom up, the need for people to become more active, the interest in a different logic of green areas.
In the last 50 years cities have become more and more a concrete jungle, a cancer in the environment. But urban population has overtaken rural population. One of the steps in creating healthy communities is to improve nutrition in the community as a whole and strengten community links. And think at the city as an ecosystem.

Community gardens, created in derelict lands, by spontaneous groups of people, are possible means to this end. They are often created in empty places not considered in the urban planning, they consider land as a common ground that has to be reclaimed for the community itself, where everyone can share knowledge, seeds, work, skills, friendship.
Laboratorio di Progettazione
Ecologica del territorio
but I am part of the network and not an observer
Free metropolitan turnips
There is a great interest now in Milano on urban farming and gardening, because the headline of Expo which will be held on 2015 is Feeding the planet, energy for life. Around 2010 and 2011 there was even a project regarding urban farms: in the city there are many relics of cascine, the old buildings, that can be renovate and recovered to remember the agicultural past of the city.
But Milano shows also a great lack of consideration to community-based experiences in the reclamation of abandoned or neglected open land within the city.
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