Crying Shame - Jack Johnson - In Between Dreams
Today on the website of La Republica, they published some artists impressions of what the new parking above Stazione Termini in Rome will look like when it's finished. It's all very nice, clean lines, well signposted, functional, calm.
Except it won't look like that, will it? Anyone who lives in Rome can tell you that an artists impression of a clean urban space, with neatly parked cars and freshly painted walls is a far cry from the reality of a city practically on its knees. The artists impression should show cars parked outside of the spaces but close to the exits, blocking the lanes and making everyone else's life difficult; graffiti and tags on the walls, stickers slapped on to the overhead signs making them illegible - that's what every urban space here in Rome is really like. You only have to look at sites such as Roma Fa Schifo (Rome Sucks) to see plenty of photographic examples of how much this city has degenerated.
On the site Roma Sostenibile Tom Rankin recently wrote a very good piece called Respect | Rispetto, about how (some) car drivers in this city flaunt all the rules and the impact of this on the city and it's citizens. It's not hard to find examples; below is a photo taken outside my front door:
True, the local Vigili Urbani pass by and ticket cars, but minor infractions are rarely ticketed - one wheel on a crossing is fine, you'll only get ticketed if you park on the crossing. The Commune di Roma is missing out on a valuable revenue source here, and given how cash stapped the city is, I fail to see why they haven't done more to curb such anti-social behaviour, and make money to boot. There are endless examples of behaviour such as the above, and many websites documenting the sad decline of standards in Rome: Riprendiamociroma (Take Back Rome), Manifestiabusivi (Abusive Posters) being just two, there's even an app to use to signal such information - Decorourbano So, if like me you're fed up living like this, download the app and get signalling, there's no shortage of material. We can only hope that with the forthcoming elections the change in Mayor (almost inevitable) will result in some welcome change, and the chance to restore a wonderful city to the way it should be.