The history of Piazza del Colosseo, on view in 14 steps from the Imperial Age to today

6 August 2019

Historical information but also the latest news on tickets, park services and opening times: starting on 1 August, visitors (and Romans) passing through Piazza del Colosseo can find all of this useful information in one place, thanks to a 200-meter-long installation printed on yellow canvas wrapped around the site of the future Fori Imperiali metro stop.

The site of the new station is located between Via dei Fori Imperiali (near the entrance to the existing Colosseo stop) and Piazza del Colosseo, or more precisely between the Clivio di Venere Felice (the ramp leading up to the Temple of Venus and Roma/Basilica of Maxentius) and the Atac bus stop (direction Via Labicana). Information on the area’s history, from the Imperial Age to the current day, and information for PArCo visitors (tickets, prices, services, hours and types of guided tours) is featured on different faces of the new installation, in relation to the surrounding spaces and the needs of the public.

The side of the installation running alongside the piazza takes the shape of a timeline: 14 Colosseum-shaped bubbles represent 14 moments in the area’s more than 20 centuries of history. The story begins in the piazza itself, once Nero’s private lake sitting beneath the colossal statue of the emperor: while the former would be replaced by the Flavian Amphitheater, the latter would be relocated by Hadrian for the construction of his grandiose Temple of Venus and Roma. The story expands to include all the area surrounding the Meta Sudans and the Arch of Constantine and illustrates the various uses of the Colosseum over the course of the centuries, up to and including the Fascist demolition of Via dell’Impero and the construction of the Metro B. The journey ends in the current day, but not before mentioning Gregory Peck and Audrey Hepburn’s famous scooter ride in the classic film “Roman Holiday”.

The side of the installation facing Via dei Fori Imperiali features all the information of use to visitors and tourists: the main entrances to the PArCo, ticket booth locations, prices of the integrated Colosseum-Roman Forum-Palatine ticket; on the opposite side visitors will find a description of the complete range of ticketing options available (the integrated ticket, the Arena ticket, the SUPER ticket, the new Forum Pass (connecting the Roman Forum with the Imperial Forums)) with further information on services, rules & guidelines, PArCo hours and the various types of didactic tours available.

Near the Atac bus stop, archaeology enthusiasts will be delighted to discover a real-life window into Ancient Rome: a viewing area overlooking the archaeological dig in progress in this section of the Metro C, protected by a glass barrier allowing full visibility of the dig and illustrations of the discoveries made so far.