L’Aquila, ghost city for six years and on. Italy

L’Aquila: the wounds inflicted by the lethal earthquake seem slow to heal. The city, fled on a deadly night of six years ago, still remain suspended in time, showing the signs of an abruptly interrupted life.



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Red Zone, cordoning off the medieval center of L’Aquila: 2200 days and hundreds of millions of euros spent after the tragedy, the area is still a ghost city wrapped in scaffoldings.

Thousands of historic buildings are kept standing by safety harnesses and shoring shells, abandoned streets and alleys are immersed in a surreal silence, broken only by sporadic groups of workers committed to securing and reconstructing the most representative architectures.
The wounds inflicted by the lethal earthquake seem slow to heal. Many houses interiors and business premises, fled on a deadly night of six years ago, still remain suspended in time, showing the signs of an abruptly interrupted life.

On April 6 2009 a devastating earthquake shook the region of Abruzzo, Italy. The main shock, occurred at 3.32 am causing 297 casualties -20 of them were children- and around 1500 injured under the rubble of the collapsed buildings in the area of the epicentre (near the city of L’Aquila).
Between 3,000 and 11,000 buildings in the medieval center of L’Aquila were heavily damaged and many collapsed. Some 65.000 people were evacuated from the still standing but unsafe buildings.

The reconstruction process still languishes between repeated budget increases, corruption and widely reported suspected criminal, Mafia and Camorra infiltrations in the contract procedures.
The skyline of L’Aquila is still densely populated by cranes and the whole city is a huge, sluggish and seamless working site. There’s no reliable forecast on when L’Aquila center will be functional and returned to their residents.

L’Aquila, Italy. Apr. 10, 2015

Mandatory credit: Riccardo Budini / UnFrame

L’Aquila earthquake on Scientific American

 

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