Pontinia, a young town
Pontinia, lying on the Pontine Plain, is the third “New Town” to be founded in chronological order in the Marsh area during the course of the Integral Land Reclamation.
Inaugurated on 18 December 1935, exactly one year after the foundation stone was laid, it was built according to the design of the engineer Alfredo Pappalardo and under the artistic direction of Oriolo Frezzotti. The built-up area was erected in a square and the urban centre followed that of the other "New Towns": two large squares with monumental public buildings that confer spaciousness and grandeur. While discovering the New Town, a visit to the Museo Agro Pontino is a must. It illustrates the historical and cultural events of the town and the surrounding area and the transformation that took place with the reclamation.
Pontinia is a young town, with no past.
The presence of the marsh made it uninhabitable until the 1930s. Over the previous centuries, there were several attempts at reclamation, starting with the Romans and Theodoric. But it was only Pius VI, at the end of the 18th century, who succeeded in reducing the surface area of the swamp, thanks to the construction of a canal that still runs parallel to the Appian Way and flows into the sea in Terracina.
One of the attractions not to be missed is the lush green Appian Way with signs of distant eras that once again tell of the lack of inhabitation. Stop to visit the station of Mesa, a post station where travellers used to rest in the 18th century and which most probably originated where there was already an ancient Roman service station. And, at Mesa, don't miss the ruins of the Mausoleum of Clesippus, a spectacular tomb dating back to the 1st century B.C., with no exterior covering.
It is in the Ager that Pontinia's rural origins are preserved. Among the excellent products are the PGI Roman artichoke of Lazio and the PGI Latina kiwi.
Not to mention the white queens of the table produced with the milk of the area's buffaloes: the PDO Buffalo Mozzarella from Campania and PDO Buffalo Ricotta from Campania.
Over the years, views and corners of the town have been the setting for scenes from The Story of Piera and Diary of a Maniac, films directed by Italian director Marco Ferreri.
Pontinia has the charm of youth.