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Italy Bans Cruise Ships From Venice’s City Center
The Italian government has taken measures to protect Venice’s historic city center from potential damage cruise ships could cause.
An article from Reuters explained that the motion was passed on March 31, 2021, and called for the construction of a ship terminal outside the lagoon near the famed Saint Mark’s Square for all passenger ships over 40,000 tons, as well as container ships.
This decision was not a spur-of-the-moment decision. Residents of Venice, as well as the government itself, have pressed the issue for years. What may be the final straw that helped the government to pass this new ban was in 2019, when a cruise ship collided with a dock and tourist boat on the Giudecca canal, injuring several people.
For the foreseeable future, these large ships must dock at Marghera Port. According to an article by USA Today, The Port Authority of the Northern Adriatic Sea will host a competition to find the best sustainable option for preserving the cultural heritage of Venice while allowing a port terminal to be built.
Venice is one of the highest tourist areas in Italy, receiving up to 25 million visitors each year. With this past year, however, the number of tourists decreased greatly, and so did the number of large passenger vessels.