Milan under water, rolling tanks: the first one ready in Bresso, the others at risk of delays

We’ve been talking about it since the end of the nineties but in the end the problem is always there: the city of Milan should have it 4 lamination tanks in the peripheral area of ​​its northern hinterland, a large space that goes beyond the municipal borders to reach the territories of other local administrations: Senago, Paderno-Dugnano, Lentate sul Seveso and Bresso. And already in this first simple geographical observation the main difficulty is implicitly written: i Municipalities cannot agree, finding the areas is complicated and moreover each country has its own committee for the no. It’s been like this for about 25 years. The appeals have also blocked the projects, therefore even before the resources it is worth underlining that neither a political nor a technical agreement was found for a long time.

Looking at the resources, the overall cost is approx 100 million (estimate prior to 2020), resources that had been made available in 2014 by the Renzi government with Italia Sicura for the city of Milan, a project that was later dismantled (for the whole of Italy it was worth 30 billion) but which left these possible financing for the hydrogeological instability.

Almost ready in Bresso

The lamination tanks, where the water can be contained to avoid the flooding of Milan, there should be, as mentioned, four, positioned between Milan and the municipal administrations of the northern belt. The first, that of Bresso, will be ready at the beginning of December, after the testing phase during the month of November. It cost around 30 million, made available by the Municipality of Milan. It is an artificial reservoir from 250 thousand cubic meters. The other tanks will be financed by the government and the Lombardy Region.

As he remembers Sergio Santambrogio, councilor of the Geological Order of Lombardy, «this one in Bresso is the first tank of a larger project, made up of other tanks positioned further north. The first will be ready now, the others probably at the beginning of 2024. For now the only work in operation is the North West spillway, which manages to stop around 40 cubic meters per second of water in the event of heavy rains, allowing it to flow away somewhere else. But considering the numbers it is easy to understand that it cannot be enough: the intense rain in Milan has a capacity of 140 cubic meters per second, the spillway stops 40, the rest flows into Milan. With the Bresso tank we will be able to stop part of it, not all of it. We will be able to say that the city will be safe when all the tanks are built.”

Bad weather, flooding and damage from Milan to Emilia

Photogallery34 photos


Uncertain times

There are no certain times for these further works. A first part of the one in Senago should be ready for the second part of 2024. This work will make the difference because it is over 7 times larger than that of Bresso. The one in Lentate sul Seveso has not yet been awarded the contract for the works, just as the one in Paderno Dugnano is still at the planning stage. The delays piled up. Before the pandemic, 2023 was often indicated as the year of completion of the works, but at the moment we are far away. The Po basin Authority has imposed that all the tanks be built, now we will have to proceed, but difficulties risk being around the corner every time.

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