It is a Thursday evening in the summer. About fifteen sixteen year olds – high school students, mixed and cheerful company – celebrate the birthday of three of them and meet under one of the towers of via Richard. It is dark, there is an open gate, another can be easily crossed and the stairs outside the building, the only one empty for years and partially hidden by scaffolding, are an attraction. Get on up, the boys, up to the 16th floor, with a few beers, music, the desire to look at the view from above. It is certainly not the first time they go there. It is a place they know, near the Iris pitch where football is played. A quiet place, in their eyes (even if forbidden). But at a certain point, while dancing, tragedy happens. One of them, who is near the balustrade, loses his balance. A friend nearby notices it, tries to grab him by the shirt, fails, the shirt lags and the boy falls: the flight is interrupted by the scaffolding after about five meters and, by a miracle, the 16-year-old is saved.
But even now, a week after the accident, is in intensive care at Niguarda: reserved prognosis and with a head injury to be kept under constant observation. For teenagers of all ages, evening out in inaccessible places is attractive but unsafe places. Now the very young are moving. On about 180 abandoned buildings, some undergoing redevelopment and others waiting to be demolished, at least a dozen are hanging out with them. Places that are a bit scary and all the more tempting the more they allow you to climb high. Gates and signs are not needed, there are no guardians.
Milan, the “dangerous games” in abandoned buildings
Wednesday evening near the football pitch in via Noale, in Baggio, another “party”. The appointment is the former Marchiondi Institute, closed since the 1970s, demolition held back by the constraints of the Fine Arts. After playing or watching the game, beers in hand, we go: it’s about 11pm. There is a small road surrounded by greenery that becomes a dirt road, you pass next to a desolate Enel antenna on which someone makes the move to climb, at a certain point the boundary wall shows a hole and the boys pass under it without problems . They enter the ground, climb up to the roof of the ruin. Who hears them, who sees them? Many times, like Wednesday night, no one. but yet the police do their job and the Municipality has tried to introduce penalties in terms of building rights for those who do not redevelop, but the Region has a different approach and the matter is discussed. There are the former Innocenti al Rubattino, i cdown via Cadolini in Molise Calvairate, the «Cementone» by Greco, a tall abandoned building at the bottom of viale Ortles, another in the middle of via Savona, and again that between via Meucci and via De Notaris, in the Martesana, the one on the way Medici del Vascello, not far from the Rogoredo grove. Here pre-Covid alcoholic and paid horror “escape rooms” were also organized (legally).
Difficult to identify them, the meeting points. And it doesn’t just apply to disused properties. A few weeks ago some guys came in to the Roman pool in via Ampere, dribbling the prohibitions. And on Sunday evening others climbed over the two fences of the «Zero gravity» gym, in Lambrate. In the garden there are trampolines, they all jumped on them together. IS one of them – 19 – broke both legs. How many other raids have there been, there and elsewhere, about which we know nothing? Probably many. Also because in the group there is the rule that the less you tell, the better. There is an ever wider gap: among them the boys always make themselves visible through social networks and apps like Life360 that locate them every minute. But in front of adults, travel and stunts are invisible. The watchword is “snitch”: if you blurt out you are a spy, a traitor.
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July 1, 2021 | 07:49
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