Ventimiglia, Memorandum of Understanding for the construction of a new Community House

Ventimiglia, 13 January 2023

The Memorandum of Understanding for the construction of a new Community House in the former Eiffel locomotive depot was signed today in the Council Chamber of the Municipality of Ventimiglia. The document was signed in the presence of the Honourable Edoardo Rixi – Deputy Minister for Infrastructure and Transport and Giovanni Toti – President of the Liguria Region, along with Umberto Lebruto – Managing Director FS Sistemi Urbani (FS Italiane Group), Samuele De Lucia – Ventimiglia Municipality Extraordinary Commissioner, Nicola Poggi – Director General for the Health Organisation of the Liguria Region, and Luca Filippo Maria Stucchi – General Manager of the Local Area Health Unit of ASL1 Imperiese.

The building will be granted on free concession by Rete Ferroviaria Italiana (FS Italiane Group) to the ASL1 Imperiese, which will build the new Community House covered by the Protocol using funds from the PNRR (Italy’s National Recovery and Resilience Plan), for a total amount of approximately 4.5 million euro. The facility will represent a place where the community can access the assistance service for the healthcare, social-health and social assistance systems.

The building that will be subject to the operation looks like a typical industrial archaeology building, with a surrounding structure in load-bearing masonry and a double-pitched roof supported by metal trusses, encasing an internal surface area of approximately 670 square metres in which a mezzanine level will be built to double the surface area.

The Community House will then be built across two levels, adding a touch of brightness to the central rooms and continuity to the surrounding areas on the ground floor.

Specifically on the ground floor will be the CUP [EF1] (Consolidated Booking Centre) with adjoining rooms that will house the primary waiting area, the blood test cubicles, bathrooms, changing rooms, storage rooms and the technical room. Finally, a central stairwell and an elevator (able to accommodate patients even in mobile beds) will provide access to the intermediate floor where the outpatient clinics are housed together with a secondary waiting area.

The agreement signed today is based on the Programme Agreement signed on 19 May 2014 between the Liguria Region, the Province of Imperia, the Municipality of Ventimiglia, the Italian Public Property Agency and the FS Italiane Group (FS Sistemi Urbani and RFI) for the reconversion to commercial, productive and urban uses of part of the railway complexes located in the Municipality of Ventimigli, specifically the areas of Parco Roja and the railway stations of Ventimiglia and Bevera, Parco Campasso and Parco Nervia.

By signing this Agreement, the FS Italiane Group undertook to cede a number of areas to the Municipality of Ventimiglia by way of advance on the standards for the urban development of Parco Roja.

On 2 May 2022, the area on which the former Eiffel locomotive depot stands was ceded to the Ventimiglia municipality for the construction of three large car parks, financed by the Liguria Region, for a sum of 6.4 million euro.

 The Deputy Minister for Infrastructure and Transport, Edoardo Rixi, comments, “The former Eiffel locomotive depot, currently disused and restricted by the Superintendency, is once again at the disposal of the territory. The Memorandum of Understanding by which the FS Group, as owner, grants ASL1 free use of the building to construct a new Community House guarantees the strengthening of a fundamental service for citizens. This is an example of using PNRR (Italy’s National Recovery and Resilience Plan) funds with the aim of revitalising our country with projects that are well integrated into the territorial context.”

President of the Liguria Region, Giovanni Toti, explains, “With today’s signing, we take a fundamental step for this territory towards the progressive implementation of Italy’s National Recovery and Resilience Plan. In this way, a concrete start is being made along the path to grounding European and national resources for a profound reform of territorial healthcare that will guarantee – with a significant strengthening of services dedicated to medium- and low-complexity – proximity assistance that is even more widespread and capillary. 2023 will be an important year towards what will be a true paradigm shift, to be completed by 2026, specifically the hospital will no longer be the main point of reference for citizens, who will be able to count on a widespread network of Community Homes and Community Hospitals to guarantee an increasingly-effective and efficient response to their health needs.”

Umberto Lebruto, CEO of FS Sistemi Urbani (FS Italiane Group), states, “By signing this agreement, which is possible thanks to the close synergy between the FS Group and the local authorities, we are seeking to breathe new life into a disused railway area in which a new facility will be built to guarantee a healthcare and social facility available to all citizens.

This achieves the objective of returning underused sites to the community, providing cities with new services.”

“Thanks to the commitment of RFI, the Liguria Region and the Ventimiglia municipality,” affirms Luca Filippo Maria Stucchi, General Manager of the Local Area Health Unit of ASL1, “We are laying the first concrete stone for the construction of the Community House in the border town with funds from the PNRR. This synergy between entities will allow the territory of the extreme western part of Liguria to have a state-of-the-art healthcare facility, along with the restoration of an artefact with a high historical value. In fact, the depot bears the signature of the great Gustave Eiffel, known to most for the construction of the tower of the same name in Paris.”