Historic watermills digital survey and sustainable re-design in Cilento and Vallo di Diano National Park (Italy)

Raffaela De Martino, Rossella Franchino, Nicola Pisacane


The present work is part of a multidisciplinary research carried out within the Benecon Competence Center Demonstration Project and related to Cilento and Vallo di Diano National Park area, one of the UNESCO World Heritage Sites and included in the Biosphere Reserve network.

Cilento and Vallo di Diano landscape is an organic unit generated by the complex combination of physical and natural phenomena, firmly tied each other by mutually reciprocal relationships. The research for a dialogue between man and this heterogeneous set of elements, processes and interrelations has characterized the antrophized and natural heritage that has formed the landscape of these places characterized by great water wealth, dense slopes and lush Mediterranean vegetation.

The Geographical Information System platform of the territory of Cilento and Vallo di Diano National Park synthesizes the integrated work of knowledge of the area and of all its forms of production either cultural or material, including through the actions of the peoples who have inhabited these sites.

The GIS of Cilento and Vallo di Diano National Park has been developed to create a georeferred and dynamic database that would gather and integrate the cognitive activities carried out on the area through an innovative equipment. The GIS has been dynamically structured in thematic layers always implementable that at different scale contain the results and the elaborations of survey and data acquisition. Information, cataloged according to the ‘data warehouse’ methodology, has been structured to make easy the access by the user and to support decision-making.

The layers, integrating the information with the aforementioned data, are organized, also in reference to the various scales and main time variations. In particular, the census of the territorial resources of the territory concerned the more than two hundred watermills surveyed within the perimeter of the National Park and subsequently surveyed through 3D digital laser sensors, cataloged on the basis of cadastral data and then inserted into the GIS platform on a georeferred map as a starting point for further documentation actions. The aforementioned analysis has been developed before a subsequent step of the research on technological and environmental issues. On some watermills have been developed a surveys to check the relationship between the water system, soil quality and its uses with to define a reference framework for the use of appropriate environmental technology for water cycle optimization systems.

This study concerned the ‘Auso’ Valley water system, in the territory of Ottati, a municipality located in the north-eastern part of Cilento and Vallo di Diano National Park and has been structured in three phases.

An initial phase of analysis took into account the hydraulic characteristics of the ‘Auso’ Valley, with particular reference to the nature of the water stream, the vegetation, geological and lithological conditions of the site, the hydrological and ecological environment. The second phase of the work concerned the check on the presence of hydraulic conditions suitable for the reactivation of the historic mills as examples of the hydro-mechanical technology used in the past. The last phase finally allowed an analysis on the quality characteristics of the waters of the ‘Auso’ Torrent. It has been possible to hypothesize the creation of a “filter system” with river phytodepuration techniques in order to safeguard the water course from induced pollution.

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5755/j01.sace.20.3.19174


Cilento and Vallo di Diano National Park, Digital survey, Environmental design, Geographical Information System, Sustainable Technology

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Print ISSN: 2029–9990
Online ISSN: 2335–2000