The monuments in the Valley of the Temples must be considered as more than only architectural artifacts, isolated from their local context, and defined by areas of various sizes. They out to be considered a local unit, defined by a complex arrangement of monuments within a single landscape.
We cannot think of conserving its monuments without considering the restoration and conservation of the Valley’s entire arrangement, making the needs for using the archeological heritage compatible with the (geological, plant life, and archeological) “fragilities” of the Agrigento landscape and its development possibilities.
For the Agrigento area, UNESCO’s putting the Valley of the Temples on its “World Heritage List” is less about confirming its extraordinary cultural value and more about recognizing the uniqueness of the values that make it up, including the archeological monuments and the natural and agricultural landscape that contain and preserve them.
UNESCO’s step confirmed that the Valley is a resource to be valued as a cultural landscape, an expression of the dynamic interaction between people and nature, and evidence of a long, unbroken biological and cultural evolution.
The landscape was born of an agricultural system that produced food and raw materials. It continues to represent a material culture that forges intellectual and spiritual well-being and has been a source of creative inspiration and a refuge for biodiversity, serving essential environmental functions.
Protecting and adding value to environmental networks and ecological corridors is essential for establishing a unified land organization, for its balance (protecting biodiversity), and for defining and managing possible, sustainable changes to it.
Planning team: Politecnica, team leader (Modena), Ferrara Associati (Florence), Geo (Bari), Ecosfera (Rome) Praxis (Rome), Ernesto De Miro (Agrigento), Gualtiero Harrison (Bologna), Luca Baroni (Insitu, Milan).