This paper aims to provide a brief assessment of the legal framework of the newly established metropolitan cities in the Italian domestic legal order. After an historical overview of previous attempts to set up metropolitan cities in Italy (1), it summarizes the main statutory provisions of the Delrio Law (No. 56/2014) through which metropolitan cities finally came into operation (2) and it provides an analysis of its implementation, thereby attempting to make clear whether increased institutional pluralism and differentiation in the local government system will strengthen or weaken Italian regionalism (3). The conclusion will argue that, while the enactment of local government reforms combined with the entering into force of a significant constitutional amendment will increasingly diminish the role of the Regions, metropolitan cities, due to their ambivalent nature, still lack any propulsive thrust and face the risk of being marginalized until a consistent legal framework for their proper funding is laid down (4).
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