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Cities and Public Facilities in the Venice of Napoleon and the Habsburgs

Cartographic Representations

Emma Filipponi    -    



19th-century maps of Venice are still one of the most detailed evidence of the long process of urban transformation that the French and Austrian governments carried out in the city since the beginning of the century. Using new representative methods developed in the second half of the previous century, early 19th-century maps could accurately define the process of functional conversion of Church properties into «containers» for modern community facilities, due to the suppression of the ecclesiastical orders. Reusing religious buildings as «public establishments» started in Venice a real urban and cultural revolution, reaching in about fifty years one of the most complete forms of reorganization of the city. Organizing interventions within a new urban planning process, the new governments applied a model that tended to standardize the structure of Italian and European cities according to functional criteria, inspired by modern ideas of «State», «city» and «public capabilities». Hence, the cartographic sources of the time – perspective views, cadastral maps and topographic plants – may show the chronological limits of this complex process of urban and architectural renewal.

July 15, 2013
Copyright: © 2013 Emma Filipponi. This is an open-access work distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction is permitted, provided that the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. The license allows for commercial use. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.