Local Government and Landscape Planning

By Gian Franco Cartei

The Italian Code for Cultural Goods and Landscape places a great deal
of importance on landscape planning. Although the legal framework has
changed significantly since the important Law n. 1497 of 1939, the perspective
adopted by the Code still reflects the earlier legislation, in that it considers
landscape as a precious but limited aspect of the territory. This conception
leads to the risk that landscape planning is deemed a matter that falls within
the sole authority of the State and the Regions, to the exclusion of local
authorities. Such a view is worthy of being scrutinized. Indeed, it runs counter
to the European Landscape Convention, which is based on the principles of
subsidiarity and participation, and to recent European soft law adopted by the
European Union and the Council of Europe centred on the principle of
territorial, economic and social cohesion. Moreover, there exist within the
Italian Code certain rules that imply that local authorities must indeed be
involved in the landscape planning process.