The mayor of Venice will ask Unesco to place the city on a blacklist after Italy’s transport minister failed to implement a proposal to stop cruise ships entering central canals.
MSC Cruises’ MSC Opera crashed into the San Basilio Terminal and Uniworld vessel River Countess earlier this month, reigniting the debate over whether ships should be allowed to use the busy canals in Venice. Four people were injured as a result of the incident.
Venice mayor Luigi Brugnaro promised to write to Unesco and make his request amid a lack of action from the nation’s central government since the crash.
“Venice is in danger and we feel in danger,” Brugnaro told Italy’s Radio 24 today (June 21). “We will write to Unesco to ask for the city to be put on the blacklist.”
If Venice was placed on Unesco’s blacklist, entry into the city would be significantly restricted.
The government’s transport minister Danilo Toninelli had said he would unveil a new plan to avoid the giant ships entering the central canals by the end of June.
He has not yet presented the plan to local authorities.
A plan proposed in 2017 would force cruise ships weighing more than 96,000 tons to take a less central route and avoid the busy Giudecca canal near the city centre.
The plan has not received final approval by the national government. Work on the new route could take up to four years as dredging would be necessary.
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