Rome residents fear new lights will kill romance

Half of the lights on one piazza have been replaces by LEDs

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The Eternal City of Rome becomes even more magical at nightfall.

And no visit is complete without a romantic stroll through its softly-lit cobbled streets.

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But the golden gleam that shines across the city is under threat.

While half of this piazza is bathed in a warm glow - the other half has been replaced by a brighter and whiter LED light.

Something many residents say takes away from the beauty of the city.

Monica Larner, an American who lives in Rome, said: "This LED light is really bright, really blue. It feels like a hospital light and you don't even have the clouding, the veiling affect from the glass because it has all been removed."

The LED light take-over is an attempt by Rome's city council to make it more secure and environmentally friendly.

It also estimates the capital will save 26 million euros per year by changing to the bright light.

Other residents believe it's a smart step towards a greener future.

Luca Candolo, shop owner and Rome resident, said: "I am more than happy. I find there is more light in this area and above all there is a real saving in energy levels, this energy saving is to be welcomed, it was about time."

The new lighting should be in place across the city by the summer.

But it won't affect any of the major historic monuments - they have specific lighting requirements.

So for those still hoping for a little romance in Rome, don't write the city off quite yet.

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