Lungomare Falcomatà, built along the seafront of Reggio Calabria, is the most famous street of the city and one of the most famous in Italy. Lungomare is dedicated to the mayor Italo Falcomatà, protagonist and inspirer of the Primavera di Reggio (Spring of Reggio), the rebirth of the city from the 1990s.
The waterfront of Reggio is about 1.7 kilometers long, from Piazza Indipendenza to Piazza Garibaldi, consisting of four segments: Falcomatà, Matteotti, Corso Vittorio Emanuele III and Viale Genoese Zerbi. The entire area is generally identified as Via Marina.
The seafront of the city is rich in palm trees and varied plant species. The avenue is adorned with buildings dating back to the last reconstruction of the city, after the 1908 earthquake. The street is also enriched by elements that indirectly trace the history of the city, such as numerous commemorative monuments, a monumental fountain and some archaeological sites testifying about the Greek-Roman era.
Between the sea and the promenade stands the Arena dello Stretto (Arena of the Strait), a typically Greek-style theater that hosts cultural events especially during the summer months. On the pier of Porto Salvo, in front of the arena, stands the monument of Vittorio Emanuele III, who landed here touching the Italian soil for the first time as a king, on July 31, 1900.
The promenade of Reggio was called by Gabriele D’Annunzio “the most beautiful kilometer of Italy”, perhaps due to the mirage of the Fata Morgana, an interesting optical phenomenon visible only from the Calabrian coast.
After the earthquake of 1783, the reconstruction plan was made by engineer Giovan Battista Mori. With the demolition of the ancient walls, the strip along the sea was organized with a system of continuous buildings and an urban space that followed the course of the coast.
After the earthquake of 1908, the commissioner for public works Giuseppe Valentino commissioned the engineer Pietro De Nava to draft the new town plan, which included the arrangement of the new promenade.
The works for the redevelopment of the Lungomare are one of the main works of the rebirth of Reggio Calabria, in the ’90s. After the railway line along the coast, the Lungomare was undergoing degradation for years, during which several projects for the redevelopment took place, including that of the architect Manfredi Nicoletti. In 1994, the project of the current Lungomare was entrusted to Tecnic Consulting Engineers who created a system of interconnected walks at various levels. The Lungomare Falcomatà is today the fusion of old and new areas that form one of the largest public spaces in Europe.
HOW TO GET THERE
Lungomare Falcomatà starts about 150 meters away from the Reggio Calabria Stazione Centrale. To find it, from anywhere in the city, go towards the sea or use the map below.