Sunday 7 September 2008

Car dependency

No government anywhere in the world has really got the message about car dependency, oil addiction and climate catastrophe, has it?

Pincio remains one of the most beautiful corners of Rome, home to the Villa Medici, where Galileo was imprisoned during his trials, and boasting great views across to St Peter's and beyond. But if plans backed by Mayor Alemanno's predecessor, Walter Veltroni, go ahead, Pincio will became a huge building site as diggers tear the guts out of the hill and replace them with a seven-floor underground car park with spaces for more than 700 vehicles. Its enemies call it "a sacrilegious car park," "a cultural crime", and compare the excavation of the hill in central Rome to the destruction of the Great Buddhas of Bamiyan by the Taliban.