Authorities in Italy are calling for cruise ships to be banned from using Venice’s Giudecca Canal after an MSC ship crashed into the dock at the weekend.
The incident on Sunday (2 June) provoked protests about the impact of cruise ships sailing into the historic Italian city.
Venice mayor Luigi Brugnaro called for the “opening of alternative routes” for larger cruise ships entering Venice in a Facebook post.
“It’s no longer thinkable that large ships sail on the Giudecca Canal,” said Brugnaro.
While Italy’s environment minister Sergio Costa said that the incident was “confirmation of what we have been saying for some time”.
“Cruise ships must not sail down the Giudecca,” said Costa in a Twitter post. “We have been working on moving them for months now and are nearing a solution.”
Cruise association Clia said it “welcomed” the comments from Venice’s mayor that ships should use an alternative route to the city’s cruise terminal rather than sailing along the Giudecca Canal.
Adam Goldstein, chairman of Clia, said: “The cruise industry has worked diligently with the mayor of Venice, the Veneto Region, the port authority and many others, to find viable solutions to allow larger cruise ships to access the Marittima berths without transiting the Giudecca Canal.
“We are in agreement with the solution developed by Comitatone in 2018 to utilise the Vittorio Emanuele Canal as the best and most prudent means to move larger cruise ships away from the Giudecca. Clia cruise lines welcome and will support the urgent implementation of this solution.”
Clia said it was urging all parties in Venice to agree to a solution and start preparation work to dredge the Vittorio Emanuele Canal so that larger ships can be rerouted away from the Giudecca Canal.