What would be necessary to repair the Colosseum in Rome in order to hold big events again?

The Colosseum in Rome, of course, is a 2000 year old arena that once held massive events, but is now in a state of disrepair and has not been used as intended for over a thousand years.

What would be necessary to repair/renovate enough of it so that it could be used again for bona-fide theatrical and sporting events? If the floor were restored, I could easily see a basketball game happening there.

By repair/renovate, I mean fixes, modifications, or additions that would preserve the historical integrity of the Colosseum (i.e. no bulldozing it and building a replica). Using modern construction technology, building materials, and modern building fixtures such as electrical power or flush toilets is fine.

I don’t think that what you’re imagining is possible. Rebuild an ancient building so that it could be used as a modern sports arena while maintaining historical integrity? There are a few medieval castles that have been modernized with electricity, water, and so forth. The challenges involved with recreating an arena that seats 50,000 thousand people would be orders of magnitude larger.

I don’t even understand how you reconcile this alone. Using modern building materials and techniques is directly antithetical to restoring the Flavian Ampitheater. No b-ball without a built-in total roof cover.

Now, you could easily run some electric lights around the place. And you could put a roof or part of one over it for the cword, exactly as they did before. Runnign water? Not gonna happen. IIRC, it simply doesn’t have any piping or space for it. It doesn’t even have restrooms (which it probably can’t easily fit). Whether it would fit mdoern building codes is unclear to me: it’d be perfectly safe, but god knows if the relevant authorities would care.

I personally would love to do it. I also want to have a gladiator-themed restaurant/show every night in one section of the place, and regular circuses and plays going on.

Interestingly enough, traditional plays, as we would think of them were rarely if ever performed in amphitheaters. The Colosseum housed a lot of gladiator fights, wild animal hunts and possibly water battles.

Actually, it originally had running water. The coliseum possessed water fountains, a sewer system, and latrines. Restoring these systems wouldn’t bring them up anywhere near to modern designs, but they did exist, and were extensive across the structure. Coloseum Water and Sewer System

You guys are forgetting about the ADA (Italian equivalent) regulations that you’d have to retrofit in.

That would be difficult to do with the existing structure.

It’s certainly possible to restore the arena. The Roman arena in Verona is in better condition and is used for large events all the time. I saw an opera there once. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Verona_Arena

I imagine you’d spend most of your money restoring the seating area, as I seem to recall most of that is missing now.

I think it’s the Nîmes arena in France that also holds large events.

Money. Whole big bunches of money. With it, you can do anything. Without it, you can do nothing.

Yes, and in particular bullfights, making its current use quite similar to its original use.

I’m not sure what the Italian equivalent of ADA would be, or if such a thing even exists (such regulations are far from universal).

Even in the US, though, historical sites and structures are typically exempt from such regulations in many respects. It would surprise me if the Italians do not make similar exceptions.

The Roman-era amphitheater in Caesaria, Israel (which is much, much smaller than the Colosseum) has been retrofitted to hold events, like concerts and the like. Although the scenery is amazing - the Mediterranean is right behind the “stage” - the construction required to rebuild it robbed it of a lot of its ancient charm.

Basically, there are a lot of places to have a concert or a play. There are only so many ancient structures to see how people once lived. I wouldn’t do it.

I think they should leave the real original Colosseum it as it is, and then build a full, working, in use replica of the Colosseum as it was in its old splender across the street or very nearby.

Looking at the Colosseum’s wikipedia page, I had forgotten just how bad of shape the structure is in. Sure, there are some bones of a building there, but you’d essentially be building a new structure on an existing foundation. The only original stone that would be viewable after a restoration would be the outer walls, and even that is incomplete now.

Yeah, I think a lot of people who haven’t been there might have a misperception about how intact it is. It’s a true ruin, though. Half of the exterior is gone.

Doesn’t the Pope lead Good Friday Stations of the Cross there?

You think you can just plop down a 50,000 man stadium in the central heart of Rome today?

If it were to be done, the way to do it would be to set aside modern codes and expectations (except for basic structural safety), and just repair/recreate the ancient structure.

  1. Yep! there is plenty of room. The new replica would be exactly the same size, same dimensions, as the original one, with no additionals. The Colosseum is really is not all that big, it is not even half a block, and it is smaller than most any other stadium existing in the US and it wont even have a parking lot.
  2. Exactly the same, same materials, same facilities, set aside all modern building codes.

I’ve never been to Rome, but I very much doubt that they’re awash with spare land in the heart of their city!

Even if there are no historic buildings in the way, it would cost a stupendous sum of money to obtain the necessary land. And then there’s the stupendous sum of money needed for using non-standard building techniques…