The Romans are considered amongst the greatest architects of ancient times. To accomplish this, the Romans had to borrow many of the ideas that were already in use from previous eras before them. For instance, the Romans made significant changes to the styles and forms of buildings and the changes made upon such forms "had created a daring and unique style that was profoundly to influence the western world." (Payne 247) The Ancient Greek style of architecture can be clearly seen in the Roman arches that they constructed with significance placed on key elements. One Key element in Roman structures is the use of engaged columns. An engaged column is a "column which is attached to a wall so that only half of the form projects from the wall." (Vadnal 2) The temples were mainly built using Greek designs but the Romans changed the proportions to ones that better fit their needs.
Roman architecture was practical. Architects and civil engineers used their skills to build the best possible roads, bridges, baths, forums, theaters, and supplies with elaborate aqueducts and sewers to meet their needs. Roman architecture was so solid and sturdy that many structures are still standing today. These include arches, columns, roads, and buildings, such as theaters, amphitheaters, and circuses, which were designed for recreation.
The Romans created a vast empire over the years; they expanded throughout the Mediterranean region, to North Africa, Asia Minor, and most of Europe. In all the lands they conquered, they left traces of their culture behind. They especially left traces of architecture. One example of architecture, made while battling in foreign lands, is the Amphitheater of Arles in France. By the reign of Julius Caesar, Rome had all the Problems of a big city metropolis. The narrow streets were completely congested, and traffic in the center of town was nearly impossible. Roads were built just as they are today in some sense.