Bagnoli, a neighbourhood on the west outskirts of Naples, has been a typical industrial and working class area for more than eighty years, having put up an important factory district in a wide territory belonging to its seaside zone, where the Ilva-Italsider building, third steel industry centre in Italy, dominated. Since 1993 this huge factory has been definitely closed and its facilities have been phased out. So the large territory has become object of an important conversion and urban requalification project. Between 1995, when the variant Regulation Plan of Naples Municipality was introduced, and 2005, when the Executive Urban Plan was approved, this project has been developing and completing, defining the future of the ex industrial area, according some privileged lines: enhancement of natural and landscape aspects inside the heart of Pozzuoli gulf; recovery and development of the original touristic vocation through the thermal system and bathing restoration. This project opens towards great expectations of transformation and improvement of life and environment quality both for the inhabitants who live there in the neighbourhood and for the whole city. At the same time it has happened a speculation phenomenon through the sale contract concerning buildings and flats by the realties, together with the transfer of many historical inhabitants and the arrival of new people in the neighbourhood. They are attracted by the changing prospective of the area, but they have no relation with the zone and its history. So, during the last twenty years, the neighbourhood identity has been modified. Contemporarily, the soils draining proceeds slowly and among thousands difficulties, while the sea bottom draining isn’t active yet. Today, most of the area is under seizure by judiciary, that found irregularities and defaults in the draining works, realized only for the 65%. The future imagined in the conversion project results, in this way, largely compromised. In this research work we intend to verify how a particular physical-spatial dimension has influenced the social relations and the same identities of the people and their “community”, how we can delineate the perception and the performance of a urban transformation largely failed, and which contribution the citizens of Bagnoli can give to the urban design through their own imaginary and meanings they ascribe to their environment (Lynch 1960). In this sense, the study aim at giving a contribution to the participative practice, that up to now is out of the transition dynamics.