Plagued by depopulation, suffocated by lack of resources, the Lombard city of Esino Lario, with 747 inhabitants in the province of Lecco, offers its symbolic places for sale: the town hall, the square, and even the banks can be found on an auction site.
The mayor writes: “Unfortunately, we no longer have the means to combat the biggest problems in our municipality. The only thing left is to appeal to the private sector. That is why I have decided to sell the symbolic places for the good of everyone.” The offer – as in some newspapers – can be found on the site vendesiesino.it, where you can buy what is for sale from the village at 910 meters above sea level overlooking the eastern shores of Lake Como.
There are still six days before the auction ends. The town hall is still for sale for 200,000 euros, the welcome sign for 1250, and the price for a bench is 280 euros with promotion 3 for the price of 2. Each “object” has a precise description: “Outdoor bench, used for years by citizens and tourists during their walks through the streets of the city. It consists of lateral mounting brackets and support in nodular cast iron with a large base for stable anchoring to the floor, treated with a protective layer of paint and pine boards”.
It is clear that the mayor of Pensa, a professional provocation, is a cry for help for the many small Italian municipalities who are “abandoned in the fight against depopulation.” This not only jeopardizes the survival of a municipality – as in this case – but also “age-old cultures and traditions”.
Earlier, there were also several Italian villages that offered houses as good as free.