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Parco Fluviale Gesso-Stura
Settore Ambiente e Mobilità Piazza Torino, Cuneo, Piemonte
Phone: +39 0171 444508 - Fax: +39 0171 602669
Surface: 4500 ha - Population: 90.000
Number of municipalities: 1 (Comune di Cuneo)
Parco Fluviale Gesso-Stura
The Gesso and Stura River Park was founded by the Piedmont Region headquarters in February 2007. The town of Cuneo had already started working on the redevelopment of the area in 2003 and since 2005 has held several promotional activities.

The original idea of the River Park, however, has to be attributed to the citizens of Cuneo, which urged since 1979, with letters and petitions, the municipal authorities to exploit the river area.

With the approval by the Regional Council of Piedmont of the Regional Law No. 16 of 3rd August 2011, the Park has grown, including some regions in the municipalities of Borgo San Dalmazzo, Vignolo, Cervasca, Castelletto Stura, Centallo, Roccavione, Roccasparvera, Montanera and Sant'Albano. From January 2012, the Park has 10 municipalities, covering an area of 4500 ha, 60 km of river and a population of over 90,000 inhabitants, representing more and more a hinge connecting the highlands and lowlands.

The main purpose of the Park is to combine environmental conservation and protection of biodiversity, with the development of the region, exploiting the potential of the area. Its touristic value, the widespread availability and the different opportunities of fruition are the strengths of our Park.
Natural heritage
From the forestry perspective the area is characterized by a low degree of naturalness due to high anthropogenic pressure. Formations of main interest are oaks and dill of black alder. Regarding the fauna, the group of most interest is avifauna, consisting of 156 species, 97 present during migratory movements in spring and autumn or winter, and 59 nesting. In the park reproduce two species considered SPEC 2 (species with unfavorable conservation status and more than 50% of the population concentrated in Europe): green woodpecker and redstart, and six SPEC 3 (species with unfavorable conservation status, but not concentrated in Europe): wild dove, kingfisher, stiff neck, swallows, flycatchers, and red-backed shrike.
Historical and cultural heritage
The Gesso and Stura River Park preserves also many examples of historical-cultural interest, particularly relating to rural culture and society. Just think about the clever irrigation fabric or canal network of silk for the tanneries, the hydraulic sawmills to paper mills, forges, textile laboratory for hemp. Of note, the presence of farms of great historical, environmental, architectural and testimonial interest: Bombonina farm, Fantina farm, St. Anselm farm, often embellished with towers, chapels and dovecotes. Finally, the first slogan of the park was "The Park with the city in": the city of Cuneo, with its history and its artistic and architectural heritage, therefore, remains the highest point of interest from the point of view of history and culture.
Main activities
The Park offers a lot of areas for sports, education, leisure: municipal and private sports facilities for swimming, tennis, football, beach volley, roller, climbing, riding, cross-country and cycling. Among others an artificial track for cross country skiing all year round, for training and competitions, and a pole for canoe on the Stura River. There are also spaces for teaching such a didactic garden, two orchards and an area devoted to butterflies, as well as an Environmental Education Center under construction. Finally, picnic areas, one with adjoining beach, biking and walking trails, ideal for hiking, mountain biking, nordic walking and jogging.

Over the past two years the tourism potential of the Park have risen significantly with the establishment of accommodation facilities that offer possibility of refreshment and spend the night in the Park.