New lights, evening tours at Forum

Called 'The Moon on the Forum', tours run through October

(ANSA) - Rome, April 20 - Visitors can experience the Roman Forum at night with special guided tours made possible through a new lighting system and available every Friday through October 28.
    The evening tour initiative, called "The Moon on the Forum", was undertaken to mark the founding of Rome on April 21 in 753 BC.
    The 75-minute tours run every Friday from 8 p.m. through midnight in Italian and English for groups of up to 25 people, and must be reserved in advance.
    The new illumination is a white and golden light that perfectly highlights the forms of the monuments and structures along the via Sacra, the via Nova and the Vicus Iugarius, revealing the Basilica Aemilia; the Arch of Septimius Severus; the Curia Julia; the Temples of Caesar, Castor and Pollux, and Vesta; as well as the church of Santa Maria Antiqua and the imposing Temple of Antonius and Faustina.
    The new lighting system was created and installed by Italian utility ACEA, using latest-technology LED bulbs at a cost of 400,000 euros.
    ACEA provided planning and project direction free of charge.
    The illumination gives the archaeological site a more uniform appearance, which is useful both from the perspective of historical interpretation as well as from an artistic standpoint, as it brings out the forms and materials of the monuments.
    In addition, the lighting makes an essential contribution to the relaunching and enhancement of one of the most beloved symbols of ancient Rome.
    "To put it like Premier Renzi, we are hoping that 'now's the time'," said Francesco Prosperetti, special superintendent for the Colosseum, the National Roman Museum and the archeological area of Rome.
    "Many lighting projects have been completed through the years, but they have all had a short lifespan because they were too costly and invasive," he said.
    "The cost is now sustainable and this should ensure a long-term future. Finally the city is opening itself to the public during non-traditional hours, and this selective and accentuating light on the principal historic moments of the Forum is truly of great beauty," Prosperetti said.


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