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Dear ATAC…I Hate You!

Posted on Nov 3, 2008 | 3 comments

I know, I know, strongly worded title, but I’m fairly upset. Just so you know, here in Rome I do not have a car, I do not have a scooter. That’s right…I rely on public transport (i mezzi if you will). They have their ups and downs and large crowds, but they have served me well for 3.5 years. #1 on my list is the beloved 60 Express. This magical bus is that stops by my house and takes me to work. Not only that, it winds all the way down past Colosseo and leaves you in Piramide, making it key when going out at night. Well, I should just put that all in the past because today I discovered that this is no longer! See, I took this photo last week thinking I was going to post about how annoying it was that there was a lot of repaving happening on via Nazionale and it was making it difficult because they kept moving the bus stops each time they moved the construction site. How did it change to me hating ATAC (the company that runs Rome’s public transit)? This morning I logged in to the ATAC homepage and discovered that the line has literally been CUT IN HALF! And no, it’s not just for the duration of the construction, it’s permanently! Now the 60 will terminate at Termini…that’s right, no more trips down to Piramide for me. What’s the reasoning behind this? Well they claim the long “jumbo” buses are causing too much damage and traffic on via Nazionale, so they are no longer allowed on that street. Ok fine, one would think, so just switch the 60 to a shorter bus and make them go more frequently….that would be logical! Especially considering the large crowds to people who take that bus from Talenti and Montesacro to work each day. Instead they just decided it would be smarter to continue using the jumbo bus and cut the line off at Termini, making it the fourth line that goes down the Nomentana and stops at Termini, how useful! I mean, why don’t they just e encourage more people to take their own cars even more than they already do! The problem with traffic is that the public transport is run so shoddily that people would rather their car.

Anyway, that’s my vent. P says I should write a letter…I, in typical fashion, think “whatever, it won’t matter.” All I know is starting tomorrow I will find myself on a slower and more inconvenient way to work. Che palle!


  1. I studied in Rome via a RISD summer program. It was a too brief stay, and a while ago now, but it has stayed with me. Your posts are simultaneously alleviating and exacerbating my own nostalgia for the place. Keep’em coming. Buon fortuna con il autobus!

  2. you should take it as a new adventure, you can partially walk to work (which is nice) and discover new places to have breakfast on the way.
    Just make sure you bring your camera along so you can take some pics!

  3. Brian – Thanks for the encouragement! One of my closest friends went to RISD and I used to visit her all the time. You’ll see her blog on my list of links. Haha, this morning was quite a long trek, but hopefully will get shorter as I figure out my way. I checked out your site and your illustrations are amazing!

    Petu – You are such an optimist my friend. Walking will be nice in the summer for sure and I will bring the camera. This morning I ran into a mini protest on the way in so that slowed things down. Speriamo bene!

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