“The Lagoon Cemented Over”. Italia Nostra sends report to EU.

Cantiere SB Mestre

By Alberto Vitucci

The cementing over of the area continues apace. And at a time when we’re talking about the defense of the planet and the climate, the damaging projects continue. A new wave of cement is about to invade the lagoon, the mainland and the coast. This is the message of the report that Italia Nostra has sent to the European Parliament, bringing together studies and projects to send as an appeal to Brussels. The report was anticipated with a presentation by parliamentarian Cecile Kyenge and Municipality of Venice President Andrea Martini.


“In 2015 the Port Authority restarted the project that calls for lining the shores of the Canale dei Petroli with rock walls and iron pilings,” writes Stefano Boato of the Steering Committee in the report, “These materials do not respect the provisions in the Regulatory Plan of the City of Mira and of the Palav, the Regional Plan. Instead of restoring balance to the lagoon, this will only aggravate the hydrological disruption with a maritime highway. This is being done to encourage the passage of ever growing numbers of ever larger ships. The Minister of the Environment has asked for the project to be suspended, but the new Conservation Commission and the Region have approved it, and are now working towards its implementation”.


“Notwithstanding the many problems that have finally emerged in the functioning of the mobile dams”, continues Italia Nostra’s dossier, “no modification or verification has been brought to the MoSE project. Meanwhile no new work for the restoration of the lagoon, as called for by the Special Law and never carried out, has been begun”. In building MoSE, said the association for the protection of the historical, artistic and natural Heritage of the Nation, “millions of cubic meters of the lagoon floor were excavated and replaced with an equal amount of cement. They’ve made artificial islands in the middle of the lagoon and bases of cement.


“The rules for the restoration of the lagoon, as written in the Special Law, have never been respected, from 1973 until today, and the restoration projects have never been initiated”, continues the dossier that was sent to the European Parliament, “while the port has adjusted the canal beds and the equipment to accommodate increasingly large ships, without any evaluation of the incompatibility with the lagoon’s systems”.


One part of the report also concerns the cementing over of Mestre, and the new hotels in front of the station. “The Poste’s building” writes Boato, “loses its functions and ends up being transformed in to another hotel, without any motivation to the public interest. The paved surface will double with the construction of a one hundred meter tall tower, while the parking and green space required by law will be moved a kilometer away. In the nearby plaza another 100 meter tall tower is called for – yet another hotel, after the seven on via Ca’ Marcello. This is the cementing over of the area, with disastrous effects”.

Source: La Nuova Venezia

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