Cruise trade group lauds permanent ban of large ships in Venice

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Large ships no longer can cruise the Guidecca Canal.
Large ships no longer can cruise the Guidecca Canal. Photo Credit: Don Mammoser/Shutterstock

CLIA said the recent move of permanently banning large cruise large ships from transiting through the heart of Venice is a step forward for the industry. The previous ban of large ships was temporary.

The decision, made by a government panel called the Comitatone, will set up a docking area in nearby Marghera for ships larger than 98,000 gross tons.

"CLIA welcomes the decision of the Comitatone, which meets our twin goals of the long-term protection of Venice's heritage and an assured future for the valuable cruise economy of Venice and the Adriatic," CLIA said. "We are very happy that the authorities have confirmed our long-held belief in the viability of the Vittorio Emanuele channel, which will allow larger ships to avoid the San Marco entry, and also the longer-term Marghera solution."

The decision, and CLIA's endorsement, seems to settle the controversy that has plagued the cruise industry in Venice for several years. Activists had mounted protests against large ships, particularly their use of a route through San Marco and the Giudecca Canal to reach the established Venice passenger terminal. That route will now be open only to smaller cruise ships.

Marghera is an industrial area about 15 minutes from Venice proper. Building a suitable terminal there is expected to take four years.

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