You either love or hate the architecture in EUR. I have to admit that I wasn’t thrilled the first time, I visited the neighborhood, but intrigued, I was, and I think most people are. The contrast between EUR and the beautiful ancient Rome is so big, that one must necessarily have an opinion about it. Today I love the place and several of the architectural works, especially Palazzo della Civiltà del Lavoro (also known as the Square Colosseum). Seeing the square Colosseum from afar throning high above the city in its always perfect white color is for me the essence of Rome and returning home.
Palazzo della Civiltà del Lavoro was made by the three Italian architects Giovanni Guerrini, Ernesto La Padula and Mario Romano. It was built between 1938 and 1943 and is probably the most representative of fascist architecture in EUR. It consists of seven floors and it is completely square with arches all around. In the bottom row you see various statues representing different arts. At the top on each side of the building you find the inscription: Un popolo di poeti di artisti di eroi di santi di pensatori di scienziati di navigatori di trasmigratori. Translated into English it means: A people of poets, artists, heroes, saints, philosophers, scientists, sailors and travelers. If you like to take pictures, remember to bring your camera, when you visit the Square Colosseum. The geometrical shapes make the building the perfect model.
Besides Palazzo della Cilviltà del Lavoro be sure to stop by the Basilica dei SS Pietro e Paolo, which overlooks EUR at the end of the main street, Viale Europe. The church was long in coming, since the work began in 1938, but was only completed in 1955. The church is just as simple and "naked" inside, as it is on the outside, and it is quite different from the traditional basilicas, one finds in Rome's historic centre.
In the late fifties, ahead of the Olympics, held in Rome in 1960, several new buildings were built in EUR, the infrastructure was upgraded and the area was finalized. This gave EUR the famous sports centre Palazzetto dello Sport, and it was also in this occasion that EURs artificial lake was made.
Other buildings that are worth taking a closer look at are EURs congress center Palazzo dei Congressi, Museo della Civiltà Romana (Museum of Roman Civilization), the obelisk on Piazza Marconi, Palazzo degli Uffici dell'Ente, Palazzo dell'INA and Archivio Centrale dello Stato (The State Archives).
You can read more about EUR HERE.