Located in the northern quadrant of the city, Ponte Milvio is one of the most ancient and beautiful bridges in Rome, a meeting place for young Romans and tourists, given its proximity to trendy bars and restaurants.
It was built in 109 BC. by Censor Marco Emilio Scauro. Although it was located extra urbem (outside the city walls), it has always played a decisive role under its strategic position between the main consular roads Flaminia, Cassia, Clodia, and Veientana.
Originally called Mulvius, a name that probably derives from the Mulvia family who commissioned it, according to common usage, it was called Mole or Mollo in the Middle Ages. This name would have been attributed to the collapse of a central arch and the subsequent temporary placement of a wooden walkway swaying at the passage.
In 312 AD, the famous battle between the emperor Constantine and Maxentius took place on Ponte Milvio. Today, only the three central arches remain of the ancient Roman bridge.
In the Middle Ages, the bridge underwent further damage, which, in 1429, Pope Martin V tried to remedy by entrusting the restoration work to the architect Francesco di Gennazzano.
In 1805, Pope Pius VII commissioned new restoration works to the great architect Giuseppe Valadier. He designed the rearrangement, replacing the drawbridges and building a fortified gate north of the bridge, the famous neoclassical tower, now known as Torretta Valadier.
In 1849, Garibaldi blew up the bridge to slow down the French troops. In 1850, Pope Pius IX had it restored.
Since then, the bridge has undergone several alterations until it assumed its current function as a pedestrian crossing.
In 2021, ACEA, which already produced the lighting systems of Piazza del Campidoglio, the Castle of Santa Severa, the Great Temple, Castel Sant'Angelo, the Colosseum, the Basilica of Santa Maria in Trastevere, and the Pantheon, has provided the Torretta Valadier with new artistic lighting. Through 16 energy-saving LED-positioned projectors, it enhances its shapes and splendid architecture.
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