The Flaminio obelisk, which stands in the middle of the Piazza del Popolo, has been covered with scaffolding to check damage from pollution and the environment and to see if it is earthquake-proof. The inspection will take at least six months and cost more than 150,000. The money is to be raised by selling the space on the outside of the scaffolding for advertising.

The next obelisks to be checked will be those at the Piazza S. Giovanni in Laterano, the Piazza Minerva and the Piazza Navona.

The obelisk In Piazza del Popolo, originally erected at Heliopolis in Egypt by Rameses II in 1200 BC, was brought to Rome by the Emperor Augustus to stand in the Circus Maximus. It was moved to the Piazza del Popolo by Sixtus V in 1589.