The board of the Como hospital trust has decided to build a new hospital outside the city limits. The undertaking is to be funded - one of the first cases in Italy - by means of "project financing". However, although by now at an advanced stage, the process has been blocked by a veto imposed by the municipality and the provincial government. Although regarded as highly appropriate on technical grounds, the project has not met with institutional approval. The hospital's location outside the city and the choice of a Rome promoter are perceived as threats to the city's identity and to the interests of local entrepreneurs. The debate on alternative sites for the hospital has proved to be a political "pantomime". Thus, what appears in principle to be a "policy window" has been transformed into a "politics window": an opportunity for political actors to gain visibility, publicly take up positions, and enhance their standing with voters.