Italy: Why Florence Bans Eating In The Street

New Measure Aims to Curb Congestion and Litter

An ordinance banning tourists and locals to eat in the streets in the popular Italian city of Florence created an uproar among tourists and locals. But the local government have aired their sides, saying it is definitely for the good of the Renaissance city.

The new ordinance called for fines up to 500 euros for tourists and locals who are violating the new law.

According to media reports, congestion and litter are the driving factors for the implementation of the ordinance. They particularly wanted to reduce visitor congestion in four of the city’s busiest streets.

Tourists flocked to a wildly popular restaurant sandwich joint All’antico Vinaio and the much-loved ice cream store Gelateria dei Neri, creating congestion in the city and reckless throwing of litter is another problem.

According to Mayor Daria Nardella, the order was passed in attempt to combatboorish tourists.”

“It’s not a punitive measure, but a solid deterrent,” said the mayor. “If tourists behave themselves as they do at home they will always be welcome, especially if they want to sample our foods.”

It’s not the first time Nardella has made a controversial target of those who love to eat in the streets in the historic city. Last year, the city mayor ordered that the steps of the city’s churches be hosed down to prevent tourists from picnicking upon them.

The city of Florence at night.
The city of Florence at night.

The Ordinance

The ordinance entails creating no-eating sidewalks, doorsteps or driveways during lunch or dinner time. This is applicable between noon to 3pm and between 6pm and 10pm.

The ordinance applies to certain streets in the Renaissance city, particularly Via de’ Neri, Piazzale degli Uffizi, Piazza del Grano and Via della Ninna.

Florence is one of a number of European visitor hotspots, such as Venice and Barcelona. The city is the cradle of the Renaissance and has been a magnet for tourists for centuries. Great works of Italian Renaissance artists such as Botticelli, Michelangelo, and Leonardo can be found in this famous city.

Mina Fabulous
Mina Fabulous follows the news, especially what is going on in the US State Department. Mina turns State Department waffle into plain English. Mina Fabulous is the pen name of Carmen Avalino, the NewsBlaze production editor. When she isn't preparing stories for NewsBlaze writers, she writes stories, but to separate her editing and writing identities, she uses the name given by her family and friends.