The Via Antonio Salandra in the Sallustiano district in Rome used to be called the Via delle Finanze. Like most of the streets in the districts, it is mostly taken up by office buildings.
Via Antonio Salandra
History and description
The Via Salandra connects the Via XX Settembre and the Via Giosuè Carducci. It was orinally called Via delle Finanze. It was longer then, and connected the Via XX Settembre to the Via di Santa Susanna and the Via Umbria.
In 1911, part of the Via delle Finanze came to be renamed Via Giosuè Carducci. Since the existence of the Piazza delle Finanze, in a different part of the city, was deemed confusing, in 1935 the other half of the Via delle Finanze also got a new name.
Antonio Salandra was Prime Minister of Italy from 1914 to 1916. The street was named after him because he used to live there and because several other streets in the districts had been named after politicians anyway.
The area where the street is located was part of what used to be the Horti Liciniani in Roman times. During the middle ages it was an area of mostly vineyards and vegetable gardens.
Toward the mid-17th century the Barberini started buying up a big part of the Quirinal Hill. They then had the Villa Barberini built on top of the Servian Walls. In 1864 a wealthy Swiss antiquarian called Giuseppe Spithover bought this villa. He also acquired a big part of the underlying terrain, including the present location of the Via Antonio Salandra.
After the Unification of Italy, it was decided to start construction works in the area around what is now Via XX Settembre. The city needed the area taken up by the Villa Spithover. Spithover unfortunately wanted such a high compensation that the city could not afford to maintain the Roman ruins that still dotted the area and everything was filled up with soil so that new buildings could by constructed.
The Via Salandra is one of the few streets in the area where a small part of the Servian Wall can still be seen. This was achieved by creating a classical portico in one of the 1930s buildings lining the street. The portico allows a view of the ancient wall, which itself has become part of the foundation of the new construction.