Born as a result of Law 167 of 1962, the seven sail of Scampia (designed by the architect Franz Di Salvo) were part of a housing development minded which also included a development of the city of Naples in the east, that is Ponticelli.
They are, after all, the work realized that best represents the architect’s architectural poetics: social housing. After years of continuous design experiments, he found himself entrusted by the Cassa del Mezzogiorno commissioned to create a large residential complex in Scampia.
Inspired by the principles of unités d’habitation of Le Corbusier, Di Salvo articulated the system of the district on two building types: a “tower” and “tent.”
The latter type, which imprints the predominant image of the complex of Sails, is characterized (in section) by the combination of two buildings inclined flap, separated by a large central vacuum crossed with long balconies suspended at a height intermediate compared the housing units.
They were also provided social centers, a play space and other community facilities.
Failure to fulfill this “socialization nucleus” was certainly a contributory cause of the failure.
The architect’s idea was to create the perfect tenement, a real autonomous city, (with garden terrace, a running track about 300 meters long, an indoor and an outdoor gym, a club, a maternal school na and so on), where each family was not actually in itself but to become part of a real community.
Unfortunately, since 1980, after the tragic earthquake in Irpinia, the sails began their sad decline, with the houses occupied by the homeless and a widespread state of decay that continues today.
Scampia in video at 20 minutes: