Wednesday, August 31, 2011

PRIVATISATION PROPOSAL FOR VALLE DEI TEMPLI

Temple of Concordia, Valley of the Temples, Agrigento

These are difficult times for the comuni of Italy:  the government has announced swingeing cuts in their funding   and schools, hospitals and other institutions all over the country are feeling the effect. Here in Modica, we have all been subject to discomfort caused by the failure of the administration to carry out its annual disinfestation process to deal with the summer's mosquito population and the courthouse is one of the institutions that we might lose    So worried are the country's mayors by the government's austerity measures that hundreds of them demonstrated in Milan on Monday.

It is no surprise, then, that mayors are trying to raise funds for their towns in any way they can and Marco Zambuto, Mayor of the city of Agrigento, is no exception:  this week he suggested that the Valley of the Temples, Agrigento's best known landmark, be managed as a "brand"  by private companies such as banks or auction houses for limited periods of time.  Under the proposals, the private companies would be able to use the architectural site for events along with the "brand" for their products and advertising in return for paying a fixed fee to the city.  The companies would also be "invited" to sponsor the maintenance and restoration of the site as well as the maintenance and improvement of its infrastructure.

Louis Vuitton, Versace and the London auction house Sotheby's are some of the companies that the Mayor is said to have in mind for the project.  Who wants a temple motif on their Louis Vuitton bag?

10 comments:

jams o donnell said...

The Coca Cola Temple and the shrine of the Big Mac? I think not!

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

I think you're right, jams.

Patricia said...

Shudder!

annechung said...

Privatisation is a code word for using the monument as collateral to get funds from a private source. The company loan the govt money in exchange they take the monument and take in the receipts as payment for the loan. It's like Greece putting up the Acropolis as collateral which they are going to be forced to do in exchange for the bailout. It's a crying shame. I love the valley of the temples.When one takes bailout money, the country will lose their sovreignty!

Winchester whisperer said...

Yes please!

the cuby poet said...

Don't you feel that this type of sacriligious activity is akin to selling the soul of a place. Spirituality versus finance.......sounds pretty grim to me and it is everywhere in these dire financially stretched times.Oh dear oh dear.

James Higham said...

Sounds appalling.

Weekend Yachtsman said...

More to the point, who wants corporate logos on the temples?

Ghastly idea.

Welshcakes Limoncello said...

Yes, I shudder too, Patricia. Hi, Anne. I agree totally. Sorry, WW. I am not a fan of privatisation. I agree, Cuby and James.

Leslie: said...

I can understand the attempt, in any way, to keep these monuments in good condition so anyone can visit and experience history. But I totally agree that it'd be horrid to have logos all over the site! I was so awed by Agrigento and would love to return some day!

Counters


View My Stats