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Environment

environment

Chignolo
Thanks to its middle position in a homogeneous territory called island, Chignolo was chosen as meeting point of the consuls of the 23 villages of the Quadra, who decided there matters of general interest, although it never boasted being a chief town.
The highest measures of the Chignolo territory are 3500 m. of width and 2250 of length, with an extended surface of about 5,29 sqkm. One optimistic person called once an almost invisible protuberance of the ground Mount Orphan. Actually, those who come to Chignolo from Terno or Bonate can see the houses and the Churches of Chignolo a little bit higher than the surrounding country. If you well observed , you can notice that houses stand on the border of a wide terrace covered by woods which try to hide the difference of 10-15 m. from the ground below.
It is a wide terrace which split from the Mount Canto near Mapello, laps Terno, crosses vertically all the territory of Chignolo, reaches Rodi and gradually fades away in the country of Grignano.

The ground is composed of compact layers of clay, with few rocks, which instead are abundant in the alluvial plain in the East of Buliga. What is interesting is that, except for the large plain towards the River Adda, the rest of this tableland was left uncultivated for centuries and was called Bedesco from Carvico,
Sotto il Monte and Terno down to San Fermo in Grignano.
By observing the various altimetric heights in the IGM (Military geographic institute) maps, you can realise that the height on the see level gradually and constantly decrease from 241 at the borders with Terno and Medolago to 204 at the borders with Madone, in the Muggiò zone.

It is worth mentioning the several rivers which flow throughout the territory, without dwelling upon the Dordo which only laps a part of the south-east border. The Buliga is of great interest since it crosses vertically the whole municipal territory, flowing at the foot of the Bedesco, to which it has adapted its bed throughout millenniums. In the last few years, in order to avoid any dangerous risks, such as erosion or overflowing, the Drainage Co-operative of the Bergamo’s Middle Plain has carried out important hydraulic works in the urban centre, in Brolo and in Via Don Bosco. The stream which flows into the Dordo, just after leaving the territory of Chignolo, is generated by some insignificant brooks going down from the southern side of the Mount Canto and by some small channels from the Bedesco. Just above Chignolo, it receives the waters from a small brook which originates between Carvico and Sotto il Monte, collecting the drainage waters from some parts of the Bedesco; therefore it is called strainer Somma or Bulighetto in old maps. This river encountered some corrugations of the ground in Chignolo near the borders with Terno and Medolago. Consiquently it had to open a narrow passage towards the Buliga. Even the Grandone originates from Mount Canto, on the side of Villa d’Adda and crosses a long part of Bedesco where, just above Baccanello, it has dug a small and plain valley which closes again just where the stream flows into the Buliga at the south of Chignolo, thus creating the wedge (“cuneo”) which gives the name to the village. Finally there is the Rio Zender which is born between Amati square and Bianchina farm-house and whose bed marks the border with Suisio. This stream is usually dry at the beginning and then is fed only by the drainage waters from the part of Bedesco that it crosses. In the well irrigated plain, throughout the centuries a thick net of channels was dug to bring water to all land. Almost every field was surrounded by little channels and ditches, usually empty.
With careful and repeated works, the land sweetly degraded towards one or more sides, avoiding the stagnation of the waters coming from rains, drainage and springs. The enclosed roads, which are called “cavedagne” somewhere else in the North, are still a peculiarity of a wide zone of Bedesco between Medolago and Suisio, and in the North of Chignolo, along the present Via Galilei which is connected with the provincial road Terno-Medolago.
This road, which is much lower than the adjoining fields, is joined by several paths, which are very enclosed and with hillocks. They could make water flow half towards the main road and half towards the Grandone or the Buliga.

In the northernmost part of the municipal territory, included between the border with Medolago and Via Galilei, the country is flat for a long stretch and the net of "cavedegne" isn't very visible. Maybe for this reason some fields were called "al laghetto" (by the little lake) and still in the eighteenth century someone stated to own here some marshy land. Now, the several agricultural requirements have partly cancelled this old landscape, which was unique in the province of Bergamo. It isn't by chance that most parts of Bedesco hardly drain away rainwater. In the East of the Buliga the soil is much more sandy and gravely and consequently more permeable; therefore it doesn't require such a complex land reclamation works. To ensure the irrigation of cultivations especially in times of summer draughts, in 2002 the land reclamation Cooperative of the Middle Plain of Bergamo provided a installation for rain irrigation.