Rome is about to completely renovate the Colosseum, returning part of the structure to the way it looked in ancient times. An arduous challenge but, from a historical and cultural point of view, certainly fascinating. According to the words of the Minister for Cultural Heritage and Activities, Dario Franceschini, “a great idea that has already been around the world”. And the project, in fact, is ambitious. Reconstructing the Colosseum arena floor through new technologies to offer visitors the opportunity to admire the monument-symbol of Rome as it was originally.
The first formal step to give concrete form to what is currently still a dream on paper, was taken on December 22 with the publication by Invitalia of the announcement. At stake is an investment of over 18 million euros that will include both the completion and conservation of the underground structures, which are only partially visible today. “Those who enter the Colosseum will have the opportunity to admire the imposing machine of the Flavian Amphitheater in all its beauty and complexity” explained Minister Franceschini
The operation will indeed have to take place in compliance with precise conditions, and whoever presents the project will have to take into account two key factors. The first is to ensure a contemporary perception of both what the arena once was like and the complex system of underlying structures and mechanisms. Secondly, the new arena will have to be conceived as a unitary plan, with a high technological content, consisting of mechanized opening and closing devices. Visitors must understand the synergy and close relationship with the underground, also using systems that reproduce the mechanisms of elevators and ancient mobile scenes.
“However, the intervention will not have an invasive nature and according to our plans, the works could start already by the end of 2021”, Franceschini remarked. There is time until 1 February to submit offers to join the first Invitalia call.
The Colosseum, one of the symbols of Rome, leads the ranking of the most visited museums and national archaeological parks in Italy with over 7.5 million admissions in 2019 (the last useful year for counting, before the forced closure imposed by the pandemic ). In 10 years the visitors have been more than 60 million, since it places the monument in fourth place in the world ranking. Before him only the Louvre Museum in Paris, the Great Wall of China and the National Museum of Beijing.