Iron barrier to encircle crumbling Colosseum

By Gay Nagle Myers
romecolisseumIt's not just moped drivers that tourists have to dodge in Rome. A new concern for visitors and Italian authorities is wall fragments and pieces of rock falling from the ancient Colosseum.

A protective barrier made of cast-iron columns will soon encircle the entire structure. The columns will sit 15 to 50 feet from the Colosseum walls to keep tourists at a safe distance.

This is not the first safety issue concerning the Colosseum. Fragments have been falling for several years and close to 50% of the site has been closed to the public because of safety concerns.

In October, a new report revealed that the 2,000-year-old gladiator hall also is leaning 16 inches to its south side.

A three-year program of renovations and repairs to the Colosseum begins in December, to be funded by Tod's, the Italian producer of shoes and other leather goods.

The city also is looking for funds to shore up the Trevi Fountain, which is crumbling due to an unusually cold winter last year.
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