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Transcript of Venice
•If venetian residents are few – foreigners should be incentivised to reside in the city – majority opt the opposite path, visiting Venice as tourists
•"I would like to send an invitation to the world – come and live in Venice," he said. "It doesn't matter if you are British or American – if you love Venice, that makes you a Venetian. The death of Venice is not just a problem for Italy; it's a problem for the whole world." – Matteo Secchi
•Declined in past – history, due to black plague (black death)
•During the early 1990’s italy entered slow population growth – increased fertility decline – zero natural increase, now among lowest fertility rates in the world
•Venetian heritage declines as citizens leave city By: Bismah, Divya, and Adhora Smart Foundation Building Up -In the 1600s, normal tides seldom rose over the stone footings at the base of buildings; today, they do so regularly.
-Polluted water leaves the aftermath of rubbish and smell in Houses and streets around 200 days every year
-Residents on ground level pump out water from their houses with buckets or drain it into the canals with pipes
-Floors sweat the water they had absorbed, leaving dampness for days
-Most doors are partially submerged, rendering them useless and causing many residents to commute through windows and docks
-Many residents have moved upstairs or out of town because of the constant damp and moldy structure conditions. Since the 1950s, Venice has lost over half its population. Today, fewer than 70,000 people live here.
-Even so, for the residents that remain; housing is very costly; architectural value plus expensive utilities The Living Situation - Typical Venetian foundation- once outer layers stripped, forest of wooden pylons
- These logs were staked past the soft layers of sand for 10 to 15 feet until they reached the hard bedrock below
- Surrounding the pylons are several layers of water-resistant stone. As long as the sea washes against this lower level, the structure above is well protected.
- The extensive love affair with bricks in Venice began in the 12th century, when brick replaced wood. Its presence in almost all buildings displays the bricks correspondence to the needs of building techniques and required durability for peculiar environmental conditions.
- The bricks, sometimes coated in stucco, are soft and porous and much more vulnerable to corrosion.
- As chemists at the University of Venice investigated, the salt travels up through the brick. As the water dries, the salt crystallizes. With every new flood, the salt dissolves once again and bores a little more into the brick. Eventually, the brick cracks and crumbles away.
- This salt rise, or risalta salina reaches up to 7 feet up the walls
- Maintenance is challenging and costly, but if it's neglected, crumbling and even collapse can result.
- The tide has no regard for historical value and eats away at floors and walls, apparent in Saint Marks Basilica were grand pillars and mosaics are thoroughly corroded
- The greatest effect to housing was the flood in 1966, which rose 6 feet above the Basilica’s floor
- Most Importantly, the materials of these buildings are not sustainable -Through history, the people of Venice have had their own housing solutions
-Without the constant water pumps, Venice would be a pool; however everything was once high and dry above the sea
-Around 5 feet below the sea today, is the earliest proof: A walkway made of roman tiles
-Through archeological record, the gradual and progressive build up of land is visible for 5 or 6 floors
-As the city sat on marshes, anything built would eventually sink into the sea. So when a building was too-often flooded, the Venetians would either raise the floor level or they might tear the whole thing down and build a new structure on the old foundation.
-As sea water rose, the residents instinct was to rise ground level as well; layer after layer, after layer
-But this strategy was suddenly abandoned around 1800, when the republic of Venice fell to Napoleon
-Ever since then, residents have fossilized the structures as if the city were a museum; in fear of losing their heritage
-The instinct to preserve their way of life stops the Venetian people from building up or even thinking of demolishing old buildings
-However the costs outweigh the benefits, and some venetians have been thinking of building on top of what they can while they still can
-Many say this urban redevelopment could provide an alternative to the mysterious flood gates, in addition to narrowing the three outlets to the lagoon; which could decrease flood level 8-12 inches Sources Pollution Pollution Management Strategies •To cover overhead costs, - local merchants and restaurateurs charging “tourists prices” to local residents
•Housing costs increase – double or triple what they were initially over a decade previously
•More convenient and affordable to reside in nearby towns such as Verona, Treviso, or Padova
•Mestre contains a fourth of the prices for utilities, real estate, and food than that of Venice – cost double to repair or renovate due to the supplying of materials by boat
•Home improvement costs annually – humidity and rising waters
•Also decline due to a deficiency in jobs
•Funeral – red coffin symbolising the death of “La Serenissima”
•Venetians fear that they have become an endangered species – the city will be inundated with tourists by day – be a ghost city by night
•Sky high rents and exorbitant property prices
•Loss of history – historic buildings converted to cafes, bed and breakfast restaurants
•Overwhelming tourism – limited job opportunities – (hotel, merchant, restaurant worker, gondolier) •Continuously shrinking – demographers predict that by 2030 – will not be a single resident
•Serious risk of becoming an empty façade
•Resident Matteo Secchi – counted residential population – 62 027 permanent residents (half the population 20 years earlier)
•Falling from 1960’s
•Fearing for future of aquatic city, Matteo and other residents formed online site Venessia.com (monitor and record declining numbers of population) – decided to mark the fall of population below 60 000 with a funeral - October 2009, the number dropped to 59 984 (red casket travelled by a three gondola cortege through city canals on November 14)
•Citizens claim that the decline in numbers is a result of the overabundance of tourists in the city
•Past, foreigners remained for weeks, days, months at length, generating revenue, however, with cheaper flight tickets and package offers that seam other cities such as Florence and Verona, mass of tourists comprise of day – trippers
•Has included additional cost – no cars ( all goods must be transported by boat)
•Property taxes risen drastically – rising cost in fuel to provide fundamental amenities (i.e. water), services such as garbage renewal
•Groceries a third more expensive, out of suburbs due to long commute
•Past – two sets of prices, (one for tourist and one for local residents, as tourists did not pay city taxes) It's Beauty It's Ugliness “We no longer live on Water, or Land” It's History It's Hopes - Sited on a group of 118 small islands separated by canals and linked by bridges
- Described as the most beautiful city built by man and one of Europe’s most romantic cities
- Is famous for its intricate transport system of interconnected canals
- A centre of art, architecture, and culture
- Has been known as the "Queen of the Adriatic", "City of Water", "City of Masks", "City of Bridges", "The Floating City", “City of love,” “City of lights,” and "City of Canals"
- To Italians known as La Serenissima, the Most Serene Republic
- For twelve hundred years, the city has performed a magical balancing act between sea and land - November 4, 1966; extremely high tide swept the city for over 15 hours, soaking the Basilica four feet deep
- Today, the downward movement of land; subsidence, and the upward movement of tides; eustatism causes the city to face daily flooding, called "acqua alta," or high water by Venetians
- Between October and January, the lowest parts of Venice flood almost every day, and much of the city is inundated half a dozen times
- Caused primarily by the weather, strong winds out of the south driving Adriatic waters to the north and forcing it into the lagoon and causing flooding
- Estimated that city is sinking around 5 inches per century
- The flooding causes various other problems in the city
- City System: Not Sustainable, linear
- Venice was originally soft marsh land
- 16 centuries ago, the earliest settlers who were running away from barbarians purposefully picked an inconvenient spot so that they would not be found
- Only locals knew safe paths, and soon developed a monopoly on trade and shipping in the Eastern Mediterranean. This is what made Venice rich and powerful.
- During the mid 14th century, several rivers along the lagoon began depositing large amounts of silt, turning it into a swamp
- This cause disease and great disturbance to the people, so they began a project lasting two centuries to build canals through the city and redirect the silt
- But the Venetians were left with another problem, one they could not solve so easily: their city was sinking, it had always been sinking - Since the 1966 incident, teams in Venice have created an alarm system to warn residents of upcoming floods
- When an alarm or warning rings, generally 3 hours before a high tide, teams rush outside to set wooden walkways for central and necessary paths, however these will only last if the tide is below 110cm
- Another option to deflect high pressure tides is to increase canals, however these small canals will disturb firefighting crews who need large canals to enter areas and stop daily fires
- The response of the government is the grand scale project MOSE to be completed in 2014. Inspired by Netherland’s flood gates, it consists of costly and controversial flood barriers, which will be raised when a flood is building up. 78 steel boxes, 20 meters wide, up to 5 meters thick and 30 meters high
- Projects such as these may be planned, but easily are withheld due to politics and economy, and are very rarely carried through http://www.springerlink.com/content/c850g01879202066/
http://ch2mhillblogs.com/water/2011/01/19/fusina-venice-treatment-wetlands/ Air Pollution:
o Atmospheric air pollutants include:
Sulphate paniculate matter
o Aforementioned chemicals showed seasonal trends for each
o Seasonal cycles of sulphur dioxide concentrations are more prominent/marked than other two because of influence by meteorological conditions and urban/industrial heating changes
o Concentrations of sulphur dioxide in air affect deterioration of buildings located in smoky/industrial areas -Water Pollution:
oVenice Lagoon is heavily polluted mainly because of discharge of nutrients and toxicants from watershed
oNever maintained sewage system; thus large portion of human wastes has been dumped directly into channels
oGenerates strong gradients of pollutant concentrations as water quality degradation impairs designated use of the lagoon
oChemicals found in water:
PVC – Polyvinyl Chloride
DDTs – dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane
PCBs – Polychlorinated Biphenyl
oAlso water is polluted by mainland farming practices and untreated sewage; only recently sewage has begun to be treated before raw dumping into lagoon
oGlass factories in islands of Murano, urban wastes, and atmospheric depositions are biggest contributors to pollution of Venetian Lagoon -Water pollution:
oOnly recently more septic tanks installed to better treat sewage
oPlans are underway to improve water quality by decreasing sewage flow , improving standards of water treatment, reusing water, and dispersing effluents offshore into Adriatic sea
CH2M HILL, along with Italian consultants Studio Altieri and Thetis SpA, hired by Regional govt in 2000 to come up with engineering design for combined municipal/industrial wastewater treatment plant in Fusina (adjacent to Venice)
Also wastewater treatment for industrial complex in Porto Marghera, Venice
oResults after a decade of efforts:
250-acre free-water surface wetlands natural treatment project
Provides approx. 4000 m3/h treated water from urban area facing Venice, before discharge into Adriatic sea OR for reuse by nearby industrial factories (e.g. cooling water)
Fusina treatment wetlands is now not only one of largest in continental Europe, but it also recreates ecosystem functions that Lagoon had lost due to development -Air Pollution:
oVarious air quality networks put in place
oFirst air quality network implemented was private industrial, called EZI – associations of industries in Porto Marghera – mainly devoted towards monitoring SO2 concentrations
oIntegrated System for Environmental Monitoring and Emergency Management (SIMAGE) – running for a few years due to presence of industrial land in Porto Marghera, which contains oil refinery, cracking/petrochemical plants, refineries, incinerators, thermal power plants, metal production/processing plants, etc.
oEZI, ARPAV (another air quality network similar to EZI) and SIMAGE are/were methods and networks that allowed Venetians to gauge amount of pollutants in the Venice atmosphere http://www.csa.com/discoveryguides/venice/review4.php
[10:29:29 PM] Divya Sridhar: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/0160932785901103
[10:29:33 PM] Divya Sridhar: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/0004698178901762
[10:29:38 PM] Divya Sridhar: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/3589653
[10:29:51 PM] Divya Sridhar: www.nytimes.com/2011/05/15/world/europe/15venice.html?_r=0