Cruise ships have been stopped from berthing in the centre of the city after a new decree enacted by the Italian Government. Instead, new plans for a berth outside the lagoon will be drawn up. For the time being, it is understood that big ships will keep docking at the city’s industrial port.
There have long been calls for cruise ships to be banned from Venice particularly from cultural and environmental organisations because of their impact on the city’s delicate historic buildings and on the lagoon’s unique ecosystem. The final straw appeared to be the crashing of a cruise ship into a quay in June 2019.
“Everyone who has been to Venice in recent years, whether they be Italian or a citizen of the world, has been astounded by the sight of these ships that are hundreds of metres long and as tall as apartment buildings pass through places as fragile as the Giudecca Canal or in front of St Mark’s,” Culture Minister, Dario Franceschini remarked.
“That is why yesterday’s decision by cabinet to definitively plan and implement the docking of the ships outside the lagoon, as UNESCO has long asked Italy to do, is so important”.