Piazza del Popolo lies between Pincio hill and the Tevere, and at the top of a trident, il Tridente, formed by three streets: Via del Babuino, Via di Ripetta and Via del Corso. The piazza's name came from the Latin populus, meaning “people”; the modern name for the piazza is, fittingly, People's Square. It used to hold public events such as fairs and, up until 1826, public executions. For several years, the piazza was the first view that travelers had when they entered Rome.
The piazza's present Neoclassical design is the creation of the architect Giuseppe Valadier, who worked on it from 1816 to 1824, after he was commissioned by the French prefect Tournon. He replaced the original trapezoidal shape with an ellipse, after demolishing some buildings and retaining important structures.
One structure still present today is an Egyptian obelisk of Seti I, imported from Heliopolis and re-erected by engineer-architect Domenico Fontana. Known as the Popolo Obelisk, it is the second oldest obelisk in Rome.
To the northeastern side of the piazza is the Santa Maria del Popolo. The twin churches Santa Maria dei Miracoli and Santa Maria in Montesanto stand at il Tridente's junctions. The Fontana del Netunno and the Dea Roma flank the piazza, and in the middle is the Fontana dell' Obelisco. To get to the Piazza del Popolo, one can take the Metro line A that stops at Spagna or Flaminio or the buses.
Piazza del Popolo, Rome, Italy
Metro Line A - Station Spagna or Flaminio, Buses