Benedictine Courts and Reclaims
The excursion starts from Codevigo, town of Roman origin (called Caput Vici, chief town), with its beautiful parochial Church of S. Zaccaria, completely rebuilt in the 16th century. Along the short section of the provincial road, you can see on the left one of the many rural complex of the area, displaying the plaque “Corte Colombare” to witness the ancient monastic estate. Crossing the river Bacchiglione you reach the village of Correzzola. Here the Benedictine monks, taking the Ora and Labora (pray and work) motto literally, pull out a fertile area from the insalubrious marsh through the excavations of canals and drainages.
The center of their activities was the monastery built in the 15th century near the right bank of the Bacchiglione, a river port supporting the exchange of goods between Venice, Padua and the rural hinterland. Following the bank of the Bacchiglione leads to Brenta d’Abbà; once crossed the river, you pass by Santa Margherita pumping station. Once reached the river Brenta, you can follow its right bank backwards and return to Codevigo.
Santa Margherita water pump is an important testimony to the reclamation process that over the centuries has turned the Venetian countryside, susceptible to floods and swampings, into fertile agricultural areas by a careful water management.
Built in the late 19th century and still fully functioning, it hosts the Water Pump Museum provided with a documentary and photographic archive.
Ca’ di Mezzo Oasis can be reached by deviating for a few kilometres, proceeding along the right bank of the Bacchiglione beyond Brenta d’Abbà.
The oasis (30ha), with its rich biodiversity, is one of the most innovative example of phytoremediation site in the Veneto region and it is also the perfect place for excursions and educational activities.