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The people of Milan and Lombardy have always used the Navigli for transport, irrigation and the requirements of everyday living.  Illustrious figures have helped to write its history, including the Sforzas and Viscontis, Leonardo da Vinci, Marie Therese of Austria and Napoleon. Our magnificent heritage includes the residences of the aristocracy, works of engineering from the Lombard hydraulic school, washhouses, farms, medieval villages, religious architecture and elements of industrial archeology. The natural heritage is preserved in its parks which are veritable treasure chests of biodiversity. For centuries now, the Navigli have been a fundamental element in the identity of our area, an extraordinary cultural and architectural heritage which we need to relaunch and develop, bringing the Navigli back to life and turning them into the driving force for growth. The aristocracy and wealthy bourgeoisie felt that the banks of the Navigli were a fitting context for their stately summer homes and country houses with their ornamental parks and gardens set amid the farmlands.  It is vital to preserve these relationships which often turn canal bank architecture into a priceless backdrop for tourism itineraries. The presence of water also allowed for the construction of all manner of factories, such as textile mills, hydroelectric power stations, flour and paper mills. Although these buildings have lost their original role over the years, they can still be considered valuable sites of industrial architecture, notable for their architecture and playing a major role in the history of the area. The great number of churches and abbeys also acted as an incentive for religious tourism. Any project for the redevelopment of the Navigli must appreciate the fundamental role of the historical architecture and natural environment of the Navigli System. This requires a survey of assets in terms of numbers, importance, and interest in terms of type, history of landscape design, and culture. To this end, over the past few years, Navigli Lombardi has drawn up maps of this enormous heritage which can still be visited.

For centuries now, the Navigli have been a fundamental element in the identity of our area, an extraordinary cultural and architectural heritage, which we need to relaunch and develop, bringing the Navigli back to life and turning them into the driving force for growth. The aristocracy and wealthy bourgeoisie felt that the banks of the Navigli were a fitting context for their stately summer homes and country houses with their ornamental parks and gardens set amid the farmlands.

It is vital to preserve these relationships which often turn canal bank architecture into a priceless backdrop for tourism itineraries. The presence of water also allowed for the construction of all manner of factories, such as textile mills, hydroelectric power stations, flour and paper mills. Although these buildings have lost their original role over the years, they can still be considered valuable sites of industrial architecture, notable for their architecture and playing a major role in the history of the area.

The great number of churches and abbeys also acted as an incentive for religious tourism. Any project for the redevelopment of the Navigli must appreciate the fundamental role of the historical architecture and natural environment of the Navigli System. This requires a survey of assets in terms of numbers, importance, and interest in terms of type, history of landscape design, and culture. To this end, over the past few years, Navigli Lombardi has drawn up maps of this enormous heritage which can still be visited.

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