Almost a year after the quake which rocked central Italy on 24 August 2016, killing 300 and razing several towns and villages to the ground, Amatrice, close to the epicentre and severely damaged, now has a new town hall – thanks to Milan.
Barely a fortnight before the anniversary, Amatrice mayor Sergio Pirozzi accepted the keys this week from Milan councillor Carmela Rozza, in a ceremony which left him visibly moved.
The 170 sqm, single storey, wood-faced building consists of five offices, a waiting room and a server room for the computer system, plus a walkway to the ruins of the old town hall where documents and other objects are slowly being retrieved. Fitted out with air conditioning and heating, phone and data lines, it is of course built on a quake-proof foundation.
The total cost of the new civic centre was just over €162,000. Of this, over half was donated by a subscription among Milan’s Chinese community in a moving act of generosity and integration, said Milan mayor Beppe Sala.