Rome, an international or global metropolis ?

Rome in Antiquity

At its peak, Rome was called « Caput Mundi », capital-city of the world. Dominating, conquering, ingenious and modern, the metropolis was a successful model of urban development.

Nowadays, the situation is far different. Concerned about preserving its unique heritage, Rome is facing up many issues to adapt itself to the new world urban obligations. Mobility issue, economic development and attractiveness are at the heart of metropolitan thought initiated by the capital-city.

Can Rome catch up with its past centuries of glory ?

The « Millenium project 2010-2020 » is a first response on Rome’s branding strategy for the 30 next years. One of the axis picked up is the patrimonialization of the roman economic development.

The religious – the State of Vatican world symbol of the catholic sphere – and cultural aspects bring vital financial incomings for Rome’s growth.

Article 1st Concordat of 1929 (Latran agreement) also reminds : » the holy spirit of the eternal city, catholic world center and place of pilgrimage, the italian State involves itself in Rome to prevent from all that could be opposite to that rule. »

Modern church in Rome

Modern church in Rome

This branding strategy is one of the causes of Rome adaptation difficulties to the new urban and economic world obligations.

To stop urban sprawl issue, all the master plans insisted on the fact that Rome had to be rebuilt on itself.

One question, how to reach new mobility challenges when digging brings you back 3000 years in the past on the Empire remains and that lobbying make all planning projects cancelled in the name of history ?

Althought the metropolis has three airports, it isnot well-connected with the industrial and making decision heart of Europe.

Rome made a lot of efforts to specialize its economy on services sector, precisely banking, however its financial and economic power remains inadequate, at the international level, to influence main decisions. Few global headquarters are located in the capital-city.

Nevertheless, some international organization’s headquarters are in Rome as FAO, the Food and Agriculture Organization, IFAD, International Fund for Agriculture and Development, World Food Control Committee and  World Food Program.

Finally we can say that Rome is an international city because of its cultural and religious attractiveness but it doesn’t exist as a global metropolis.

This position seems to fit better, now, to the milanese city. Located in the industrial italian valley, connected wtih the main european capital-cities and supported by metropolis as Turin and Genoa, Milan emerged as the industrial, business, financial and university centre of Italy.

Rome seems to agree with its functions leaving to Milan the italian economic leadership.

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