Rome, 2017



Rome, Italy


Eleven Magazine


Honourable Mention – International Design Competition



Design Team

Sergio Bianchi with Simone Fracasso, Simone Russo, Valeria Menculini, Roberto Ruggeri

During the last 800 years of the history of Rome there have been 34 relevant floods that brought the normal river’s level (2-5 meters) to reach 16 meters.

To prevent the occurrence of these natural disasters in the sixties there have been built two big dams in the northern proximity of Rome, more specifically in the city of Corbara and in the village of Alviano. Despite this when rains last more than 4 days with an intensity > 50 mm these two mega structure are not enough and the city of river’s level raises dangerously for the city of Rome.

In addition to these modern hydraulic solutions Romans are protected from the river also by “Muraglioni”, 10 meters high walls that contain the river in the city center. Their realization was performed following the flood (17 meters high) that inundated Rome on 28th of December 1870. Following this exceptional event it was constituted a special commission, responsible for the choice of interventions to be taken. Among all proposals there was also the one presented by Giuseppe Garibaldi in 5th of April 1875 for a partial deviation of the river to the eastern side of Rome..

The proposed design solution comes from the path drawn by Garibaldi in those years and it adapts it to the different urban systems structuring the contemporary urban context of Rome. More specifically the idea is to split the river’s stream in two branches to lighten the hydraulic load of the river, optimizing the urban sewer system and making the city safer from future floods.

The aim is to convert existing riverbanks from passive and neglected waterfronts to active public spaces for the development the cultural heritage that links Romans with the Tiber.

At the same time the implementation of a new riverbed flowing on the eastern side of the city will be an opportunity to work with critical areas where natural spaces are lacking.
From a mobility point of view the design reinterprets the ancient navigability function of the river by introducing a Rapid Transit System that, along with a Cycling Infrastructure, runs through the two branches of the river and enriches the entire urban mobility system of the city of Rome.

Technical report