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Archaeology & History

Floor of the Colosseum set to be rebuilt

By T.K. Randall
December 29, 2020 · Comment icon 8 comments

The Colosseum remains a major tourist attraction. Image Credit: Cody escadron delta
The world-famous Roman amphitheater could be about to become the ultimate restoration project.
In its heyday the Colosseum would have been a true marvel to behold; the largest amphitheater ever built, this huge stone structure would have been frequently filled with the cheers of thousands of spectators as battle-hardened gladiators fought to the death in the arena below.

Wild animals such as lions, tigers and bears were also often introduced to keep things interesting, usually resulting in the human participants being mauled to death, much to the crowd's delight.

While today it is still possible to visit the Colosseum, much of it has fallen into disrepair. The arena floor, for instance, is entirely missing, exposing the rooms and corridors situated underneath.

Now however, Italy's government has put out a call for bids from engineers to completely rebuild the missing floor - complete with lifts and trapdoors - thus restoring the Colosseum to its former glory.
The budget for the work currently stands at 18.5M euros (or $22.5M).

"The reconstruction... is a great idea which has gone around the world," said Culture Minister Dario Franceschini.

"It will be a major technological intervention that will offer visitors the opportunity to, not only see the underground rooms... but also appreciate the beauty of the Colosseum while standing in the center of the arena."

The project, if it goes ahead, should be completed in 2023.

Source: BBC News | Comments (8)

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Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #1 Posted by bigjonalien 3 years ago
Finally restoring history, they should do this to the pyramids!
Comment icon #2 Posted by Jon the frog 3 years ago
Crossing finger that it will not be a concrete slab with steel under structure ...
Comment icon #3 Posted by Seti42 3 years ago
They mention being able to see the rooms/corridors underneath, so I'm guessing (hoping) the new floor will be transparent. Although, I have mixed feelings about rebuilding/adding onto existing ruins. I like them as they are, and aside from thoughtful preservation, I don't know if I like the idea of restoration. I hope at some point in the future we'll just preserve and project 3D holograms over ruins that show, in spectacular detail, how they once looked. That way, we can see their past without damaging/altering their present. 
Comment icon #4 Posted by Seti42 3 years ago
I disagree. Personally, I think the Pyramids would be a great test model to see how viable projecting a convincing image of how they once looked onto them would be. It's probably not possible to do this well now, but in the future, I think 'holograms' will be a great way to view the past in situ.  Have the projection fade in and out slowly or something so both 'versions' can be seen over time, too. 
Comment icon #5 Posted by pallidin 3 years ago
According to the article, the floor will be retractable, not transparent.
Comment icon #6 Posted by Jon the frog 3 years ago
Retractable means a lot of machinery... omg, not sure of it at all !
Comment icon #7 Posted by Orphalesion 3 years ago
I'd be generally in favor of restoring Ancient sites to their original appearance (or at least close to it) First on the list; the Parthenon!
Comment icon #8 Posted by Tom1200 3 years ago
Are you sure about this?  So many sites have been remodelled and rebuilt over the centuries - who would decide which version to choose1?  Also we know (ccss)2 that many ancient sites were built using advanced technology and we simply couldn't repair them today.  For example it's impossible to shape big stones and pile them up, unless you can solve the ancient sonic levitation anti-gravity acoustic field harmonics equations3 AND build a hypothetical machine that generates sounds.  With our limited ingenuity today that's simply impossible, which is why no tall building has been built since p... [More]

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