The Rome city council has come up with plans which it hopes will keep private cars off the roads in the run-up to Christmas.

Five free shuttle buses will link undergrounds stations, railway stations, car parks and commercial areas. The vehicles will be marked Sh 1-5 and will run as follows:

Sh 1 will connect the parking area in the old general market in the Via Ostiense with the shopping area of the Via Marconi; the Sh 2 will leave from the Piazza Augusto Imperatore for the Via Candia, Via Ottaviano and the Via Cola da Rienza; the Sh 3 will travel from Ostia station to the Idroscalo, and Sh 4 will take passengers from the Agnanina underground station to the popular commercial centre at La Romanina. Finally the Sh 5 will go from the Magliana station to the Laurentina station, on the B line of the underground, passing through the commercial area of EUR.

These Sh buses will run from 15.30-20.30 until the 17 December and from 18-23 December will run from 10.00 -20.30.

There will be more trams and buses on the routes through the most popular shopping areas; they are tram no. 2 and 8, express buses no. 20, 60, 80 and 90, and buses no. 70, 85, 87, 116, 160, 170, 451, 545, and 791.

On the 11, 17 and 18 December, it will be possible to park for free in the cark parks at Ponte Mammolo, Anagnina, Magliana and Saxa Rubra and buy two city bus tickets for the price of one.

From 12-23 December, the central zones, where only limited traffic is allowed to enter, namely the Ztl, will be closed until 20.00 on weekdays. The weekend night-time closure in the zones will be suspended on the 16, 17, 23, and 24 December.