Participation in Prato:
Active citizenship

La passerella

One of the few public green spaces in the historical centre

The Passerella Garden is one of the few public green spaces in the historical centre. Probably because of its secluded location near the Porta al Serraglio railway station, in recent years it had become a derelict place frequently associated with drug dealing and drug taking. The problematic situation and the determination to regenerate this important green lung for the use of children and citizens have prompted residents, associations, administrators and institutions to design and implement activities and events that would rehabilitate this area and make it lively and attractive again. The participation and joint action of different local operators resulted in a true urban regeneration movement from below which achieved the structural and social renewal of this area.
In the first months of 2016, the garden was completely renovated, a new playground for children was installed and the flowerbeds were planted with azaleas, cornelia roses and other types of plants that are not found in any other gardens in the city, in order to make it unique and attractive. Most of the work was carried out by landscape professionals but some areas were left for garden user associations to design and create together.

There is a sensory garden with a great variety of medicinal plants, and in other areas annual seedlings were planted during the opening ceremony by the children who play in the park. All those who promoted the regeneration of the garden - associations, school, and municipality - celebrated the new space with a big opening party in May 2016; since then they have planned and organized together a full calendar of events.

A coordination group that meets monthly has been set up to manage the area and design, plan and support animation and urban revitalization initiatives; it includes the Mazzoni Institute and many associations, including Recuperiamoci, Legambiente, Coro Euphonios, Gruppo genitori Passerella, and Street Basket Prato. Other associations have contributed a number of activities and workshops within the gardens; all these initiatives are promoted through the Creazioni Urbane project which, among other things, advertises the programme through monthly calendars and totems in various parts of the city.