The Italian housing plan


Recently, a lot has been said about the housing emergency in Italy and the housing plan promoted by the government. Being a regional law, every Italian region approved its own version.

The housing plan is a national law which,The Italian housing plan  Articles once implemented by Regions, allows to expand the volume of existing buildings up to 20%, 30% if a crumbling property needs to be destroyed and rebuilt (version implemented in Lombardy, LR 16 July 2009, No. 13). Regional law requires municipalities to report by 15th October 2009 the areas to exclude from enforcement.
Lombardy was one of the first regions where the law came into force. From 16th October 2009 it is possible to submit the Statement of Activity (DIA) to municipalities or apply for a building permit (art. 42 and art. 38 LR 12/20005) concerning interventions of redevelopment and construction of residential buildings.
The effects of this legislation are extraordinary and temporary (the law allows a period of 18 month to apply, or 24 in case of Public Housing interventions) and it is guided by the principles of simplification (more flexible procedures for start-up), subsidiarity (involvement of municipalities in law enforcement), soil saving (use of existing volumes without further urban expansion), energy efficiency (both for new contributions and existing buildings), landscape quality (consistency with the identity and the history of the urban area) and safety of buildings (compliance with anti-seismic standards)”.
According to the housing plan, the regulation is valid also in case of partially residential or non residential buildings located in residential districts. The construction of new structures will be allowed only for housing purposes, without taking advantage of volume bonuses. However, the goals of the Housing Plan have suffered considerable limitations due to local decisions restricting the scope of operations: many areas of Milan were excluded from the enforcement to avoid damage to historic buildings, such as the historical centre, within the circle of Bastions, and 11 other districts (Villaggio dei Giornalisti, Cimiano, Porpora, Pisacane, Aspar, Del Sarto, Lincoln, Washington, QT8, Postelegrafica and Borgo Pirelli). In other municipalities, similar restrictions were approved as well, in order to preserve the most sensitive areas under the urban, historical, monumental, landscape and environmental points of view.
The aim of the Housing Plan is to create new spaces for families, to renovate abandoned and degraded areas, to promote energy conservation and to improve districts of public housing. Our hope is that these goals will be achieved as soon as possible, maybe in the incoming months.

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Author: Piyawut Sutthiruk

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