The Foro Italico, formerly called the Foro Mussolini, is Rome‘s most impressive sports complex and is seen as a masterpiece of Fascist architecture. It was designed by Enrico Del Debbio and, at a later point, Luigi Moretti, who took their inspiration from the classical Roman Forum.
Foro Italico Rome
History and description
The Foro Italico was built between 1928 and 1938 and consists of a number of different sports venues, including the Stadio dei Marmi, the Tennis Center and the Swimming Stadium (Stadio del Nuoto). The biggest and most important building, the current Olympic Stadium, was originally called Stadio dei Cipressi.
The most important sports events having taken place at the Foro Italico are the 1960 Summer Olympics and the Football World Championships in 1990.
The main entrance to the Foro Italico is on its south side, across from the Ponte Duca d’Aosta.
Particular features of the fascist designs are the Obelisco Mussolini, the enormous black and white mosaics of Schwarzenegger lookalikes around the indoor swimming pool and the 60 statues of the Stadio dei Marmi that are made of the typically white marble (hence the name) of Carrara. The statues were donated by the various provinces.
Del Debbio was responsible for the first building behind the obelisk, which is presently the seat of the CONI (“Italian Center for Olympic Sports”). He also designed the Stadio dei Marmi.
The avenue between the obelisk and the CONI building was the work of Luigi Moretti. It is characterized by its Roman style floor mosaics. The marble blocks with important dates in the history of the fascist regime were placed there after said regime had already been defeated.
To get to the Foro Italico it is easiest to take bus 32 from the Ottaviano metro stop.