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Identity of the city

In 1954 La Pira inaugurated the satellite city of Isolotto, a far-reaching initiative launched by his administration to combat the serious housing shortage (“not houses but a part of the city”, an example of good public residential building). As he handed the keys to the first tenants he said “Love this city as though it were a part of your personality so to speak. Your roots are in it and the future generations that stem from you shall also be rooted in it. It is a precious heritage that you must pass on to future generations not only intact, but improved and enlarged”. “Every city – he added – contains a vocation and a mystery. Every city is, in time, an image of the eternal city, far from it. Love it, therefore, with the love you give to the common home that is given to you and your children”.

The city is a common home – said also La Pira – in which the constituent parts are all part of the one whole; the workshop is as much an organic part of the city, as the cathedral, the school and the hospital. They are all part of this common home. It is a single humus, a single catalyst, and a sole responsibility which each individual has for the duties of everyone”.

"Our duty as city leaders is to think, essentially to meditate. If we do not meditate we are only general managers”.

On this see also:

Crises and role of the cities (Venice 1954) 
Conference of the mayors of capital cities 1955 
Speech to the Red Cross (Geneva 1954) 
Il mistero dei tetti di Firenze