Architecture & Real Estate | May 3, 2021 6:05 am

The Colosseum Is Getting a Retro-Futuristic New Floor

It's slated to open by 2023

The Colosseum
The structure is ancient; the upcoming floor is brand new.
Irene Ortiz

Not too many buildings constructed 2,000 years ago are still standing today. Then again, Rome’s Colosseum was and remains a singular building, wowing visitors for century after century. It’s the rare buildings where its individual components have stories of their own — one of many reasons why so many people continue to find it compelling.

Currently, the chambers situated below the Colosseum are visible and face the open air. That’s about to change, according to a report from The New York Times. The article, by Elisabetta Povoledo, notes that the Italian Culture Ministry just announced the winner of a design competition, the goal of which was to come up with a new floor for the Colosseum.

The winning design involves a number of wooden slats which can be rotated to ventilate the underground spaces in the structure. Engineering consultants Milan Ingegneria designed the new floor, and the cost to install it is around $18 million.

The new floor is scheduled to be in place by 2023. Among the goals for its installation: giving visitors to the Colosseum a sense of what it was like to stand in the space where gladiatorial combat once took place. As you’re thinking about post-pandemic travel, this could well be a fine reason to book a flight to Rome.