by Melinda Gallo

Via Ghibellina

For the past few weeks, the city has been working on via Ghibellina. There have been many manifestazioni (rallys) because the workmen are digging up all the old stones from the street and dumping them in a truck to be hauled away some where. One woman who lives on via Ghibellina (as the story I was told goes) followed the truck and found out that they were just disposing of them completely. Their plan is to replace the old stones with asfalto (asphalt).

Living in Florence :: Via Ghibellina

Via Ghibellina is supposedly one of the longest streets in the center of Florence. It's not that it's really the longest one, but it is the longest one whose name doesn't change. Many streets downtown change names all of a sudden after some piazza or intersection. Via Ghibellina starts at via del Proconsolo and goes past the Bargello museum, Palazzo Borghese, Teatro Verdi, Casa Buonarroti, "Le Murate", which is an ex-monastery, and out to the viale (the large avenue that encircles the downtown area).

Buses and cars go down this street to exit the downtown area.

It has been quite disheartening for many residents of Florence to see its history being dug up and replaced with black asfalto. Because of the recent manifestazioni for the past month, the work was sospeso (suspended) as shown in the photo that I took yesterday.

Today, when I walked down via Ghibellina large tractors were busy digging up more stones from the street, past the point where I took the picture, and dumping them in a truck. I was led to believe that they weren't going to continue work on via Ghibellina, but I guess the city is continuing its plan.

I saw many people standing on the sides watching the few men work. It was very noisy and dusty, but not really that interesting to watch.

Almost anyone who lives in Florence will agree that the city should spend more money on cleaning up the city instead of fixing a street that wasn't that bad to begin with. It was a little bumpy in spots, but people shouldn't be going that fast down it anyway. But I think they could've come up with another idea to maintain the city's treasures while improving the streets at the same time. They didn't need to tear it all up to start afresh.

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