Built between 1865 and 1877, the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II is Italy’s oldest still-running shopping gallery and a significant landmark of Milan. The gallery is a four-story arcaded structure topped by a glass dome. The structure took its name after Victor Emmanuel II, the first king of the Kingdom of Italy.
The glass dome of the Galleria connects two streets named the Piazza del Duomo and Piazza della Scala. The glass and cast iron arcades covered the streets which was a popular design for the shopping arcades during the 19th century. At the center of the gallery, is an octagonal space covered by a glass dome. Overall the gallery led the way to the evolution of modern enclosed shopping malls.
The Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II was much larger in scale than its predecessors. The vaults of the gallery are 14.5 m in width and 8.5 m in height, and the dome is around 37.5 m in diameter and 17.10 m in height. The dome got serious damage during the aerial bombings of World War II. Later, the roof faced complex conservation issues, and the roof underwent some modifications during the 1980s.