Italy will tighten the number of cruise ships that can pass the historic Piazza San Marco starting in January, according to European media reports.

And large ships of 96,000 gross tons or more would be banned from transiting the current favored route through the Guidecca Canal starting in November 2014.

Prime Minister Enrico Letta met the transport and culture ministers as well as the governor of the Veneto region and the mayor of Venice, and approved plans to limit or shut down cruise ship traffic in parts of the Venice lagoon, according to the Reuters news service.

Italy enacted limits on cruise ships after the Costa Concordia accident, but had suspended them in Venice, one of Europe’s busiest cruise hubs.

Separately, a movement had sprung up in Venice in reaction to the increasing scale of ships which dwarfed the buildings in the city.

Under the new limits, the number of ships of more than 40,000 gross tons authorized to cross the Guidecca Canal next year will be cut 20% from 2012 levels.

After November, ships of more than 96,000 gross tons will be banned from the canal while a new channel is developed to the main Venice terminal.

Ships such as Carnival Sunshine and Royal Princess, which called on Venice this summer, would exceed the November size limit. Ships such as Splendour of the Seas and Norwegian Jade, which are scheduled to sail there next summer, would not.

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