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Contrada (plural: contrade) is a generic name given to various types of Italian city subdivisions, now unofficial. Depending on the case, a contrada will be a località, a rione, a quartiere (terziere, etc.), a borgo, or even a suburb. The best-known contrade are the 17 contrade of Siena, since they form the teams in the palio di Siena.
In some parts of Southern Italy and Sicily contrada is a subdivision of a comune, also administrative. In other regions, as in most of Lombardy, it may simply be a street, but with historical and social importance; however in Mantua contrada indicates a street in the old town.
In Veneto, particularly near the Alpine foothills, contrà indicates a smaller hamlet in a rural area (a group of houses usually smaller than a frazione); a synonym is colmel (Ital. colmello); in some municipalities, mostly populated contrae are administered as neighbourhoods (Ital. quartieri; e.g. in Bassano del Grappa, historical contrae Campese, Sant'Eusebio, Valrovina, San Michele and Marchesane have each a neighbourhood council); in Noale, contrae are the seven subdivision that compete in the local Palio. In Vicenza, a contrà used to be a neighbourhood in the town centre, but now it replaces the noun via (street) in the old town. In Venice, each sestiere was subdivided in contrade.
In Florence a contrada is a street of secondary importance (it is not used officially, though).