The town hall – a former manor – the medieval civic tower and the porticoed street are interesting in particular from a historical and architectural point of view.
The town hall building
This building (former De Andreis mansion) was donated by its last owner to the municipality of Demonte in 1880. From this date, it became the official seat of the town hall, once in the municipal tower.
The ground floor has a double colonnade opening onto a little courtyard with a central square basin (XII century) originally in the esplanade of the Angevin Castle.
The other rooms house the offices of the township.
The municiapl tower
It stands on the right side of Via Martiri (coming from Cuneo). Though it is mentioned for the first time in the XVIII century, it can be seen in the map by Giovenale Boetto in the Theatrum Sabaudiae (1666). Probably it dates back to the Middel Ages and the Bolleris perhaps lived there before moving to the Angevin Castle (now Parco Borelli).
The porticoed street
The porticoed street of Demonte (XIII-XVII centuries) is today the main street, called Via Martiri e Caduti per la Libertà.
Once and until the middle of the XIX century the market took place here. The porticoes probably date back to the Angevin period, as proved by some of the capitals. The last porticoes were built in the XVIII century, when the Borelli manor was renovated.
Around the middle of the XV century, Ludovico Bolleris, with an edict, dictated the measures of the buildings overhanging the porticoes.
The first type of porticoes (XIII-XIV centuries) typically have a ground floor with a workshop and a corridor leading to an external wooden ladder leading to the rooms on the first floor.
From this, another wooden staircase led to the loggia. The buildings are divided by narrow alleys where rainwater drained.
The second type – in Renaissance and pre-Baroque style (XV-XVII centuries) – have an inner brick and stone staircase and wooden balconies overlooking the main street.
More radical changes appear in the Baroque-Neoclassical period (XVIII-XIX centuries) The houses have new vaulted rooms with a door or an arched opening. On the first floor the rooms have a staircase leading to the loggia.
The roofs now had a front to back orientation to drain water, This allowed to use the preexistig alleys to enlarge rooms. The loggias are closed. Two stone balconies supported by cantilevered consoles are added.
Even today, the porticoes, thanks to their length and their size are a fine example of urban alpine architecture. They reflect the development of the history of Demonte in the course of 1000 years.
– “Relazione storico-tecnica preliminare al restauro del Palazzo Borelli”, 1996 del Politecnico di Torino, Professoressa Dottor Arch. Claudia Bonardi
– “Parrocchia S.Donato di Demonte” Ed. Diocesi di Cuneo, 2008
– Studio Architetti Associati Torino – “Palazzo e Parco Borelli, progetto di restauro e valorizzazione”, 2010, Arch. Carla Bartolozzi
– “Demonte ieri e oggi”, Primalpe Edizioni, 1983
– Archivio storico della Confraternita di San Giovanni Decollato di Demonte