Works to extend Rome’s underground rail network could pose a threat to the structural stability of one of the most famous landmarks in the world – the Colosseum.
Many Italian newspapers, such as Il Fatto Quotidiano are carrying stories which claim that the extension of Rome’s underground rail network could result in the collapse of the Colosseum – one of Rome’s main landmarks and perhaps the most famous historical monument in the world.
Italy’s radical party has presented a report that claims the construction of the new Colosseum station complex on Rome’s C metro line could lead to the threaten the stability of the already fragile building.
The Colosseum alone attracts around 4 million of tourists each year. Between 7 and 10 million people visit Rome annually, according to the Tourism in Rome Wikipedia entry. One suspects that more or less everyone who visits Rome goes to see the Colosseum at least once – I certainly did while I was there last year.
Extending the C metro line is proving to be very costly and it is predicted that more than €10 billion will now be needed to complete works which were supposed to cost around €2 billion.
If the Colosseum does indeed collapse, then the cost of rebuilding it will be astronomical. Businesses in city of Rome would also lose significant tourism income as a result.
The Colosseum, which is already in a fragile state, is due to undergo extensive restoration works shortly even if it is still unclear when the project will start.
Let’s hope someone listens to the alarm bells before it is too late. If the Colosseum were to collapse, it would be a disaster for Italy.