Architect Stefano Balbi

Stefano Balbi (1581 - 1660)

In the late 1500s, Stefano Balbi, son of Gio Francesco I,  proposed to the Genoese government a new street, la strada nova, or today known as Via Balbi. He committed to finance the street and proposed naming it Via Balbi. Ultimately, the proposal to bring the street from the garden of the Pallavicino to the Piazza of Vestado was approved.

In 1646 the Senate approved the license to pave the street. The construction of the Via Balbi was a long, complex and costly project. It was finally completed in 1655, after Stefano's death. His son, Giovan Battista completed the project.

Today Via Balbi is part of old Genoa where the Balbi family palaces still exist. They house the Palazzo Reale and University of Genoa facilities.