Rome unveils restored Barcaccia fountain

Several Rome fountains being restored with advertising money

The Barcaccia fountain at the foot of the Spanish Steps has been returned it its original splendour following a year-long restoration process to remove limescale deposits. The project cost €210,000 and the fountain is among several in Rome being restored with funds generated by advertising between 2012 and 2015.

The mayor of Rome Ignazio Marino used the unveiling ceremony to announce that the €1.5 million restoration of the nearby Spanish Steps, promised by luxury jeweller Bulgari, is scheduled for the early part of next year.

The Barcaccia was commissioned by the Barberini pope Urban VIII (1623-1644), allegedly inspired by a boat brought there by a flood of the Tiber. The travertine fountain was built in 1626-29 and is accredited to Pietro Bernini, father of the more famous Gian Lorenzo who possibly contributed to the monument's decoration along with stonemason Battista Bancozzi. The fountain was restored in the 18th century, the early 19th century and twice in the late 20th century.

Other Rome fountains to benefit from sponsored restoration include the Tritone Fountain in Piazza Barberini, which was unveiled last November, and the fountain in Piazza Trilussa in Trastevere, unveiled in June, while the Lion fountain in Piazza del Popolo is next on the current list. Advertising displayed on the hoarding around the monuments is funding the cost of the works.

Meanwhile the ongoing €2 million restoration works at the Trevi Fountain are being funded by fashion house Fendi.

Foto La Repubblica