Tuesday, April 27, 2010

ANAS and their deserted cherry-red charm

Placed with regular intervals of about 50 km on old Italian state roads, you see the characteristic Casa Cantoniera A.N.A.S., which are so conspicuous they even have their own group on Flick. The cherry coloured buildings with white trimmings have been used as storage for road material and maintenance equipment for almost one hundred years, and up to the 1980s many of them also served as homes for the local Capo Cantoniere, who was responsible for regional road repairs, and his family.

Now most of the houses stand empty. Over the last 30 years, the activities of ANAS (Azienda Autonoma Statale della Strada) that used the houses to build and maintain a network of nearly 45.000 km road that constitute the backbone of Italian infrastructure have been privatized and decentralized.

Today ANAS’ road responsibilities comprise only 20.622 km including the free south Italian motorways and Rome’s great circular road, but according to Newspages.it the Azienda still owned a total of 3.150 buildings including 1.336 storage facilities, 1.179 case cantoniere or road man’s houses, 549 garages and 70 outbuildings in 2003. At that time they prepared a sale of half the case cantoniere, many of which are placed in very attractive locations, but somehow the plans have stalled. At least, most of the ANAS houses I have come across recently appear uninhabited and boarded up.

No comments:


Related Posts with Thumbnails