Monza Park

History of the park

The Parco di Monza was instituted on 14th September 1805 at the wish of the Emperor Napoleon. The intention was to set up a model farm and a hunting reserve. Construction began in 1806, under the orders of the Viceroy Eugène de Beauharnais, on the land to the north of the Villa Reale and Gardens, which had been created for Maria Theresa of Austria in 1777.

The walled area included pre-existing fields, roads, farmhouses, country homes and gardens which now became part of the new complex. The result was practically a compendium of the Lombard agricultural territory. The reason for such an operation was mainly political. The construction of a park on the lines of Versailles would have provoked malcontent among the local population. The Parco di Monza, on the other hand, with its greenhouses, kitchen gardens and orchards, could be justified at least in part.

This vast area included both farmland and woods. The farmhouses and the most important country homes already present were adapted and transformed. New roads were built and others reordered, creating a rectangular system of wooded avenues. The terrain was remodelled and the water system was adapted to the new needs of the Park. The resulting Park was unprecedented and, even today, remains unique of its kind.

The last ten years have seen several interventions aimed at improving the safety of the motor-racing track. Following these, the Region of Lombardy, in collaboration with the Municipalities concerned, the Parco della Valle del Lambro and the Sovrintendenza ai Monumenti di Milano, has drawn up and financed a three-year programme of extraordinary interventions for the regeneration of the Park and the structures included in it. Among other things, the plan envisages renewal of the woodland and restoration of the historical country homes and farmhouses. Public fruition of the Park will consequently be improved.