From the mid -seventies began a gradual downsizing of the funds allocated for maintenance and decay was not long in coming. The rains ruined widely the flowerbeds in the slope of the southern part of the garden and the plants badly treated went bad. Even seasonal ones disappeared. No better fate befell the animals that slowly dwindled. The Indian elephant donated to the city by Orfei circus, the last surviving member of the small but rich zoo of Bellini, died in the mid- eighties. The Bellini Gardens is now classified as a rather simple wooded park; in the last decade it has been used for cultural and religious events, concerts but it is no longer the destination for families and children. After years of uncertainty and abandonment during which a fire of unknown origin completely destroyed the Chinese pavilion located at the top of the hill north, along with its contents in books and documents, recently a possibility has been mentioned for his transfer to private parties in context of the new economic policies of the municipality. After years of usability, first decreased to reduced barriers and scaffolding that allowed only the transit along the length of the tree-lined street adjacent Sant’Euplio, and then completely denied, in September 23, 2010 after a rehabilitation, the garden is reopened to the public.
which were given as gifts. Around 1960 the garden became a small zoo with birds in the wild and migratory animals, such as various species of monkeys, and finally even elephants.
The Square in the central and northern hill is in poor condition; The Chinese pavilion was destroyed by fire.
The Bellini Gardens is the oldest of the four main gardens of Catania. It is called “villa”.
The garden dates back to the eighteenth century and belonged to the Prince Ignazio Paternò Castello, who had wanted it with the types of hedge mazes typical of that time, statues and fountains as to create water features. It was purchased by the city of Catania in 1854 by the heirs of the Prince, and was commissioned to the architect of Catania Landolina to make it suitable for the new type of use. To do this, adjacent private gardens were purchased and incorporated to enlarge the surface. The Avenue of Illustrious Men in the west was opened in 1880 with the busts on columns of the most famous of Italian history men, but already in 1875 at the beginning of the avenue had been placed a bronze statue of Giuseppe Mazzini. The work was completed in 1883. The garden became the usual destination for families in Catania who brought in children to play as they strolled chatting with friends. The monumental entrance of Via Etna was built and opened in 1932 and a year later, at the top of the staircase, in the square above the tunnel of via Sant'Euplio, were placed monumental statues representing the arts by the sculptor Domenico Maria Lazarus. At the end of the fifties it was tied to the tunnel area of Via Sant'Euplio and those adjacent. In those years the floral aspect was widely taken care of and experienced gardeners created real designs and inscriptions in the twin hillocks of the flowerbeds. Shortly after this it increased the number of aviaries of exotic birds, then captured, and bred aquatic birds such as ducks and swans, whose habitat was equipped in large ponds and fountains in the garden,