Vatican Museums get shelter for visitors

Vatican Museum shelter is designed to protect queueing tourists from the elements

The Vatican is to install a shelter along its walls leading from the corner of Via Leone IV to the entrance of the Vatican Museums, to protect the long queues of tourists from the sun and rain, according to a report in Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera.

Until now the city had blocked all proposals for the structure, which will be erected on Italian state soil, on the grounds that it would be considered invasive, as well as aesthetically questionable.

However, during the summer the city's architectural and heritage authorities had a change of heart. Authorisation for the project has been signed by the architectural superintendent Maria Costanza Pierdominici who stated that "the proposed works are compatible with the criteria for a listed building."

Lazio's cultural and landscape heritage director Federica Galloni described the structure as "completely detached from the walls and free-standing, resting only on the pavement”. Galloni added “It will also serve to regulate the flow among the visitors who enter and those who exit, and information on waiting times for tourists will be displayed inside. In addition it is absolutely removable."

The structure has already been bought and is being stored at Vatican warehouses on Viale della Zitella.