by Raffaella SACCHETTI
contribution of to Adriatic Coast to Coast project

in: Adriatic coast to coast heritage and spatial resources of coastline, in “International Scientific Conference: Cultural Heritage — possibilities for spatial and economic development”, Nakladnik publisher, Zagreb 2015, pp. 268-273.


Città delle Colonie – Acquapark , ‘Four nights thousand lives’, © Seba Kurtis (2014)



Adriatic Coast to Coast is a multi-year research project developed in the Architecture Department of University of Bologna (Italy). The project involves a group of municipalities, institutions, and associations that share a common interest about the spatial resources along the coast.

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Città delle Colonie, Prof. Sordi AFPG course, a.a. 2012-2013, contact sheet 8”x10”, collective photograph


Its aim is to examine the Adriatic coast in terms of two conflicting realities: that on the east coast, and that on the west, two linear systems whose individualities demonstrate the plurality of a coastal identity that over the course of the centuries has been renegotiated more than once. The largest part of the heritage of Adriatic coastline is based on a great geographical variety, which over the centuries has favoured cultural processes that differ greatly one from other.

The wide point of view of photography is adopted as tool to investigate both the physical appearance of the space, like the nature of the human settlements, when these are seen in the overall context of their local specificity, together with the current political system, the economic parameters, and the cultural roots of each particular area.

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Cesenatico, Città delle Colonie, photograph by G. Johansson (2014)


The approach identifies some areas subjected to long-term planning or to improvement projects, or to new activities, focusing on sections of landscape that are anthropised, urban, peri-urban, rural and natural. In this way, in successive phases, the Adriatic coast will be represented in its entirety, bringing together the different sections of coastline, each of which depicts a different identity paradigm.

At present the research focuses on the issue of Vacation Colonies built in 1930s in Cesenatico (Italy): abandoned places that need sensitive, attentive protection, being subject of transformations plans.

Cesenatico – Città delle Colonie, satellite based map (2014)


Through photographic experiences of appropriation and interpretation of the architectural spaces in this particular present of their timeline, has been activated a process that marks a line to start the regeneration of architectural elements.

Colonia Perugia, Bottom image: Colonia Leone XIII. Photographs by M. Pam (2014)