Genoa: Le Strade Nuove and the system of the Palazzi dei Rolli
Location and site
The Strade Nuove and the system of the Palazzi dei Rolli, in Genoa's historic centre (late 16th and early 17th centuries) represent the first example in Europe of an urban development project with a unitary framework, where the plans were specially parcelled out by a public authority and a particular system of ‘public lodging', based on legislation. The Rolli palaces were residences built by the wealthiest and most powerful aristocratic families of the Republic of Genoa at the height of its financial and seafaring power. The site includes an ensemble of Renaissance and Baroque palaces along the so-called ‘new streets' (Strade Nuove). The grand residence palaces erected on the Strada Nuova (now Via Garibaldi) in the late 16th century, formed the quarter of the nobility, who under the constitution of 1528, had assumed the government of the Republic. Palaces are generally three or four stories high and feature spectacular open staircases, courtyards, and loggias overlooking gardens, positioned at different levels in a relatively tight space. The influence of this urban design model is evidenced by Italian and European literature over the following decades. The palazzi offer an extraordinary variety of different solutions, achieving universal value in adapting to the particular characteristics of the site and to the requirements of a specific social and economic organization. They also offer an original example of a network of public hospitality houses for visits of state, as decreed by the Senate in 1576. The owners of these palazzi were obliged to host state visits, thus contributing to the dissemination of knowledge of an architectural model and a residential culture which attracted famous artists and travellers, and of which a significant example is a collection of drawings by Pieter Paul Rubens.
|Mr. Marco Bucci|
|City of Genoa|
Palazzo Tursi - Via Garibaldi 9
16124 Genova, Italy