Torino's Lingotto: Symbol of an Aging Auto City Reborn

Cars racing around the oval track on the rooftop of the Fiat works in Turin, Northern Italy, built for testing its cars, December 1929
Fox Photos / Getty Images

Former State of the Art
Opened in 1923, the Lingotto factory was once the largest auto assembly plant in Europe. The assembly lines delivered the finished cars to the roof of the five-story building, where they whipped around an oval test track (above) before driving down the building's spiral ramps on their way to the Fiat showrooms. When the plant closed for good in 1982, the city, already caught in an economic decline, was forced to imagine what its future would look like without its most important resident.

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