Following last month’s news that a ban is to be placed upon the largest cruise ships, preventing them from docking in the historic Italian city – the president of the Venice Port Authority, Paolo Costa, has announced plans for a mega port.
The former mayor of Venice is concerned a ban on large ships would restrict the city’s economic potential and turn it into a Disney-style heritage attraction with no sources of revenue other than tourism. Costa wants the city to return to its former position as a major trading power with an influential port.
In centuries past, the city was the driving force behind trade between east and west – a position Costa wants to return to. The former mayor wants to new mega port to be located just beyond the sandy barrier islands which protect the city from the effects of the open sea.
The incoming restriction placed upon large cruise ships entering the city has been initiated due to the negative effects caused by the ineffective infrastructure currently in place. A bespoke mega port could make it possible for even the largest liners and its passengers to access beautiful Venice.
The plans include a proposal for dredging work to take place to ensure cruise ships have clear access to the city’s cruise vessel terminal.
The proposed mega port would be sheltered by a three mile breakwater and cost upwards of €2.8bn to build.
With the macabre heart of a gothic poet, Costa explained: “With the deep sea platform we could develop the port and protect the lagoon. Venice cannot just be a heritage Disneyland preserved in mothballs. That is a vision of necrophiliac. Without a busy port, Venice will die. The platform would enable the Adriatic, not only Venice but also Trieste, to resume a role in world trade. Today we have an historic opportunity – to once again connect East and West with a big port in the Adriatic.”
The cruise industry supports 10,000 jobs in Venice, making it incredibly important to improve the access to the city and ensure it doesn’t become a forgotten port on cruise itineraries. Costa believes the new channel could be dredged within two years, helping to retain a healthy cruise industry within Venice.
Images sourced via Flickr Creative Commons. Credits: Kuster & Wildhaber Photography, gnuckx